Beresford Barrington Simmons, affectionately known as Beres, was born in Kingston, Jamaica West Indies on June 21st 1947 to the late Sybil Mae and George Barrington Simmons. Beres attended Saint Aloysius Boys School at 74 Duke Street in Kingston. After completing school he took up a trade as a Sheet Metal Worker. Beres came to America in 1966 to join his mother and brother in Harlem, NY. He attended a trade school in Manhattan to continue his training as a Sheet Metal Worker. He worked a host of odd jobs which included employment at Keystone Electronics and as a waiter at Lundy's Restaurant in Brooklyn. In the early 1970's Beres became a New York City Yellow Cab Driver. He would continue on to drive Yellow Taxi's for the next 35 years. During this time he met and married the love of his life Sheila, and from that union they had 4 children. Beres was an amazing father and worked tirelessly to provide for his family. He loved Reggae music, soccer, and to cook. He was the best unpublished chef in NY. Some of his main dishes were ackee and salt fish, fritters, rice and peas, escovitch fish, and porridge. His love for soccer would allow him to form a youth soccer team in the early 1980's.
As much as he loved his family and to cook, he had a passion for fighting for the dignity and human rights for all cab drivers. Beres was an active committee member and organizer with the New York Taxi Workers Alliance which is headed by Bhairavi Desai. It was there he would
participate in the fight for justice, rights, respect and dignity for all the working cab drivers. This fight would allow him to cross paths with many politicians, city council members and past & current mayors. He was featured in numerous articles in the New York Times, New York Daily News, and wired.com to name a few. Beres was also a radio host for his late night show called "Taxi Vibes" on WVIP 93.5 FM, where he went by the name Abana Simmons. His main goal was to inform his audience of the current events of the taxi industry, and to entertain the public with a variety of music.
Beres was a God fearing man who dedicated his life to helping others. He was a peoples person that touched the lives of many, and he will be dearly missed. Beres leaves behind his wife Sheila, 4 sons Beresford Jr., Khalid, Marcus, Malcolm, and daughter Suhailah. He is also survived by his sister Lena McEwan, brother Hickman Simmons, daughter-in-law Shameeka Simmons, 9 grandchildren, and a host of nieces, nephews, cousins, and devoted friends. He was proceeded in death by his parents, brother Keith Simmons, granddaughter Aleena Ruth King, grandson Beresford Jr. III, and his sister-in-law Jacquline Simmons.
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