Jay Weaver, the bass player and a vocalist for Big Daddy Weave, has died from complications of COVID-19. He was 42. Today, Christian music artists including brother Mike Weaver, Steven Curtis Chapman, Micah Tyler, Zach Williams, and Jason Gray have taken time to reflect on Jay's passing.
"My brother Jay went to be with Jesus just a couple hours ago," Mike Weaver said in the emotional video clip on Instagram, adding that Jay died from "complications with COVID-19 on top of everything else that he already had going on."
He continued, "You've seen him walk the uphill battle and you guys helped carry him through so much. The Lord used him in such a mighty way out on the road for so many years. Anybody who's come in contact with him knows how real his faith in Jesus was. Even though COVID took his last breath, Jesus was right there to catch him."
Steven Curtis Chapman writes, "So heartbroken over the loss of Jay Weaver...A man who's smile, kindness, generosity and life reflected the light of Jesus in a beautiful way! So thankful that I got to know him this side of Heaven, and because the Gospel is true, thankful to know we will absolutely see him again. Please join me in praying for his family."
Micah Tyler reveals how Jay was not just a great tour mate but a friend who helped him in his time of need. "I'm heartbroken about the loss of my friend, JayDawg Weaver. One of the kindest men I met on the road and a guy who truly loved the Lord and people. I was on tour with Big Daddy Weave back in 2017 whenever our house was hit by Hurricane Harvey and my brother was diagnosed with cancer. Jay was a constant source of encouragement and a shoulder to cry on during my darkest days. As sad as we are here without him it is a joy to know that he is WALKING with Jesus right now! Grateful to have the blessing of his friendship and praying for his family and friends as we wait to see him again. "
Zach Williams also testifies to his friendship with Jay. "Heartbroken by the news of the passing of Big Daddy Weave's Jay Weaver. Anyone who knows my story knows how instrumental their music has been in my life. I've been fortunate over the past few years to tour with Jay and the rest of the guys, and I can honestly say he was one in a million. He had a heart for God and a heart for people. He was the real deal on and off the stage. I'm so grateful for the times we had touring these past few years.
Jason Gray recalls how Jay had influenced him over the years. "Jay, along with his brother Mike and their band, were always so good to me, but never were they more kind to me than when they took me on tour with them in the weeks after my divorce was finalized.
I was dejected, depressed, and certain that my status as a divorcee would make me a pariah to both my industry and Christian music listeners. My whole future was uncertain, and all I had energy for was sleeping, though I wasn't even doing that very well. But I still had bills to pay, so what was I to do?
Big Daddy Weave invited me to tour with them for the better part of that year, a tour that felt more like a hospital than anything else as God and my friends put me back together, piece by piece. That work is ongoing.
A precious memory I'll never forget was when we were all praying in the sanctuary before a show in Alabama. I was sitting in a pew, my head hung low, quietly praying through my tears when Jay walked over to me, put his hands on the sides of my head, and lifted my face to look me in the eye.
I didn't want to look him in the eye. It was too much for me. I felt like unworthy-I had lost so much and disappointed so many people, including myself, that I was full of too much pain and shame to be able to bear looking someone directly in the eye. I wished I could escape the moment as I tried to look anywhere else, but Jay held my face steady in his hands until I surrendered to the moment and met his gaze. Then he looked deep into my eyes, past them to my soul, and said, "I love you," and prayed for my restoration. It changed me."