Gary Wesley Hayman - Spicer-Mullikin Funeral Homes & Crematory

Gary Wesley Hayman

August 9, 1951 - October 1, 2020

Gary Wesley Hayman, age 69, passed away on Thursday, October 1, 2020.

Born in Wilmington, DE on August 9, 1951, he was a son of the late Barbara Elizabeth Hayman. Gary grew up in Newark along with his five siblings.  He always described his upbringing as a close-knit community that was like a village (this was Church St. you understand).  His mother Barbara E. Haley saw to it that he attended Sunday school regularly at Mt. Zion church in Newark and always encouraged his academics & athletics.  He attended the New London School until public schools were desegregated round here, after which he attended Central and graduated from Newark H.S. 

In addition to his mother, Gary was preceded in death by his brother, Conway Hayman. He will be dearly missed by his loving wife of 42 years, Barbara (Provan) Hayman; son, Wesley Hayman; brother, William Haley; and sisters, Barbara Haley, Michelle Haley; and Denise Hayman.

In his first year of college he met my mother.  I’m not sure if sparks flew but they became friends & then they dated.  They dated in a time when a white & a black person weren’t supposed to date. But now knowing my father, you know they dated anyway.  Because who’s going to tell them no?!  He played football at Penn State on teams that played in both the Orange & Sugar Bowl. They dated throughout college regardless of the environment & then married in Dec. of ’77.   Gary earned his undergraduate degree from Penn State Univ. & later his Master’s degree from the University of Delaware.  But in between he played 3 years in the NFL.  2yrs for the Buffalo Bills & was then drafted in his 3rd by a ‘76 expansion team whom shall go nameless.  They moved back to Newark, Delaware & made a home and built his own business Hayman Enterprises Inc.  He was greatly influenced by the entrepreneurial example of his grandfather Charles Henry Hayman & proud that his company installed the signs in Philadelphia for Cecil B. Moore Blvd., his mentor and friend.  They had their son years later in 1980.  The time spent after that was spent not only raising their son but raising many of the youth in the Greater Newark/New Castle area.

This is evidenced in Lifetime Achievement awards from the NAACP and induction in the Delaware Sports Hall of Fame and Delaware Afro-American Sports Hall of Fame.  He passed from us on a Thursday, very quietly.  The opposite of a life spent in a high school civil rights protest in ‘68 that obligated him to boycott his Sr. yr. of H.S. baseball (in which he was already an All-State stand-out), to in his later years receiving the Lifetime Achievement award for his decades’ long work in the NAACP and serving as President of the Newark Branch for nearly 30 yrs.  It does not need to be said, but it should be said anyway that ‘Coach Hayman’ is known to most as ‘Coach’ from a decade of little league coaching from ’93 to around ’05.  The names New Castle Steelers & the Wilmington Stars might be names you remember from back then, if you were around.  The imprint Gary Wesley Hayman had on the county around him is measured by the players & young Men that have borne their own lives as men, fathers & hopefully coaches.  Coach is gone & I’m not sure where to go, but as my father I had a Coach. So I’ll be aight.

Oh & also his time in sports also included being remembered as a teen who captained baseball, basketball and football at Newark High School. The football team in Newark was 33-0 in football with the ever remembered “Three Aces” under Bob Hoffman.  Hayman was the state’s second leading scorer and an All-State selection his senior year.  He starred in the Blue/Gold All-Star football game, catching seven passes for 202 yards and three touchdowns.  In 1973 he shared the Delaware Sportswriters & Broadcasters Assn. “Athlete of the Year” Award. Hayman, at Penn State University, led the country in 1973 in punt return average (19.2 yard average, on 23 returns for 442 yards). He averaged 19.7 yards every time he touched the ball. Against North Carolina State he had an 83-yard punt return. He led Penn State in receiving with 30 catches for 525 yards and three touchdowns. In kick-off returns, Hayman led the team with 237 yards on eight runbacks, averaging 29.6 yards, including a 98-yarder against the University of Maryland. Hayman caught three passes for 35 yards and set up the winning touchdown with a 36-yard return against LSU in the 1974 Orange Bowl. He also played in the 1973 Sugar Bowl. Penn State was 22-2 in Hayman’s two seasons there.

In remembrance of his favorite quote I’d like to leave you with this, “Don’t talk about it be about it!”

                                                                                                            -your Son

 Visitation will be held on Wednesday, October 7, 2020 from 2 pm until 4 pm and again from 6 pm until 8 pm at Spicer-Mullikin Funeral Home 1000 N. DuPont Hwy., New Castle DE.  Interment will be held privately. Face masks will be required for all in attendance.

In lieu of flowers, please join or donate to Newark Delaware Branch NAACP #2355-B or Greater Newark NAACP Youth Council #27AB, P.O. Box 9213, Newark, DE 19714 or


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36 Condolences for Gary Wesley Hayman

  • Extending our deepest sympathies on behalf of the Newark NAACP to Barbara and the entire Hayman family. May your sadness be outweighed by a lifetime of memories of this amazing man and how tirelessly he cared for his “village”.

  • Family,
    My Prayers and Condolences to you on the passing of our Beloved cousin Gary. His Life was to be Celebrated. Love and Blessings. 🙌🏽🙏🏽🕊💕

  • Sending prayers to the wife Barbara and son Wesley of Gary Hayman. May he rest in God’s arms …we will miss you cuzz but have fond memories of you growing up together in the Newark Village….we will meet up later in Glory with the other family members! Much 💘

  • My deepest sympathy and condolences to all of Gary’s family. He & I went through elementary, jr. high and high school together. He was an unbelievable athlete and student–always a very smart guy. I hadn’t seen him in several years but we always tried to catch up when we ran into each other. I’m very sorry for your loss. Pedro & he are probably coaching on the other side. May Gary rest in peace, Sally

  • We were so sorry to learn of Gary’s passing. He was a legend in the history of Newark HS football, and continued throughout his life to help young men and women succeed. Our thoughts and prayers go out especially to Wes, his son, and to the entire family.

  • My condolences to Mrs. Barbara and the Hayman family. We have lost a great treasure and Gary Hayman. Not only for all of the instrumental things that he has done throughout his life but his kind hearted nature. He was always an advocate in the struggle for equality. He will be missed.

  • It is with great sorrow to hear of Brother Gary Hayman’s passing. We, The Daughter’s of Elizabeth Boulden Temple #269 of the Improved Benevolent Protective Order of Elk’s of the World extend our heartfelt sympathy to the Hayman family during this time of bereavement. He will be greatly missed.

    Officers and Members of Elizabeth Boulden Temple #269
    Daughter Ruler-Candace Todd
    Vice Daughter Ruler-Ethel Davis
    Assistant Daughter Ruler-Carolyn Anderson
    Financial Secretary-JoAnn Johnson
    Treasurer-Sandra Marrow

  • My sincere sympathy.

    Stevie Watts

  • We are so sad to hear of Gary’s passing and send great love to you, our cousin Barbara, and Wesley. Gary’s legacy in his community and beyond is exemplary. We are proud to have known him and hope his work in mentoring, coaching and social justice will live on. With love, Janie and Scott Provan

  • Wesley and Family, So sorry to learn of your loss. Gary and I spoke from time to time to help his mother, Barbara, a strong Christian lady. Saw Gary at Barbara’s funeral service and followed his career through the years, recalling an amazing kick off return while he was at Penn State which was erroneously called back. He was one of the finest athletes to ever come out of Delaware. Your grandmother helped my mother for many years when I was growing up on Townsend Road in Newark. ( I was quarterback for NHS.) My wife and I used to take Barbara to Mt. Zion on Sunday mornings. I know your proud of such a wonderful family. Blessings ! Bob Townsend

  • During my short time I spent In Newark during my high school years I had the privilege to meet and know Gary. When I think about him it always brings a smile to my face. Gary was a great person and from the times we spent together loved to have fun. He was also an inspiration to those he touched. Even though it was a short time together and a long time ago, his influence in my life made a difference. God Bless the family.
    6 4

  • Mr. Hayman was the coordinator of a carpenter apprenticeship program
    in the late 70’s that I was a part of. He was very inspiring and I’ll never
    forget his leadership and consideration to all of us regardless
    of race. He was a good man and mentor to many. I wish I had told him so. Reggie Shaw

  • Dear Barbra and Wesley, You have my condelonces for the lost of Gary. He was a good person and very straightforward and a great neighbor to my family for 20 yrs..prayers for him and you his loving family

  • Dear Barb,Wesley and Family,
    Please accept my deepest sympathy for your loss. God bless you all.
    On behalf of your neighbor,
    Bea Olden (Pam) and Family
    1 Bristol Way

  • May God’s Grace and mercy be upon you all during this difficult time.Pray the good and cherished memories will help sustain you.Keeping you all in my prayers.Love, R.B. Penn State,June 1973

  • Barb and Wesley, we were deeply sadden by the news of Gary’s passing, you are in our thoughts and prayers as you go through this difficult time. Gary and I were lifelong friends, we shared a number of memorable experiences over the years, I will truly miss him. I cherish all the great moments we had competing together on some really dynamic sports teams. The game I will remember the most was the Blue and Gold game our senior year of high school. It was a bitter sweet moment, we won the game and set a number of records in the process but it was also the last time that the “Three Aces” (Gary, Pedro & Tuck) would compete together. Gary was not just a great athlete, he was a good husband, a good dad, a good mentor and a good friend. Rest in peace my friend and fellow “Ace”.

  • Wes, such an awesome message for a great man. Your pop would pick me up or drop me off from practice or games whenever needed. Even after we were at Penn he was there giving me advice and telling me to “keep being me.” Even after me messing up he cared. You, and mom are in my thoughts man. Dad was an amazing role model, regardless of his sports accomplishments. More than you know. ♡

  • I’m sorry to hear the news. Gary sounds as if he had a wonderful life although it was too short. Growing up downstate I didn’t see Gary play football much, but I did see the Blue-Gold game and he put on quite a show. One of Delaware’s all-time greats.

  • I am sorry for your loss…Your family is in my thoughts and prayers.

    Tony Gordon
    Penn State 1978

  • I do not know where to begin. I coached both Gary and his son Wes. I could see Gary in his son. Gary was my first pro, I believe, at Penn State. He was industrious in his approach to the sport. He was an achiever not only in sport but in life. I woke up this morning in good spirits but will now spend the day in mourning. I should have reached out to him last week when his face came to my memories. Gary reached out to me once and I will never forget it. His voice was harmonious and warm. I am so sorry for your loss, our loss. My condolences to the family and especially to Barbara and Wes. We were so lucky to know him. Loved you my man!

  • Please except my deepest sympathies both Barbara, Wesley and the extended Hayman family. I attended high school with the 3 aces at Newark, and became a personal trainer and gym owner in my adult life. I can remember carrying Gary’s books to the next class for him when he broke his leg his 10th grade year, broke it again his 2nd year at Penn State, and his 2nd year in the pros with Buffalo. That was about the only thing that could slow Gary down for a short while; as was expected he would bounce back from each injury better than before. I have had the good fortune to train Hall of Fame football players, All Star baseball players, Olympic champion ice skaters, Pro bodybuilders, and World champion powerlifters. Gary was as great of an athlete as any of them and an exceptional human being as well.

  • Sorry for your loss. Barb I don’t know if you remember me but I used to live with Gerri and was Dreamas .friend.

  • What a wonderful person! I went to high school with him and loved watching him play football! Sympathy to all the family for their loss.

  • Rest In Peace, Gary.
    We were teammates at Penn State and my condolences to the family. I’m reminded of the song “the good die young”. Gary was one of the good guys.
    Dan Wallace

  • I am gonna miss you so much my big bro. I love you and know you were tired. Thank you for always being there.
    Condolences to my Sister In Law Barbara Hayman and my nephew Wesley Hayman. I love you all.

  • In my humble opinion Gary will never be replaced. He utilized all God’s given gifts to humanity. He was an amazing person.

  • Prayers & Blessings to the Hayman Family. Gary will truly ne missed

  • Gary was my teamate at Penn state. He was a great teamate, unselfish, and a team player. Honest and a true gentleman ALWAYS. He gave his all in everything. Gary, you will be missed. Blessings my brother.

  • I am so behind. I just found out about Gary’s passing. He was a cherished classmate at Newark High. As his son noted Gary was very into civil rights – but not in a militant way. Gary was as smart as he was athletic. I had not seen Gary for years and missed him at our 50th year high school class reunion. The community will miss this great man.

  • Wes,
    As you know, Gary and I grew up together; we shared our life goals and supported each other in our efforts to achieve them. Working with the young student athletes was something that we said we would do while we were in high school while in the Upward Bound Program at the University of Delaware. It was a pleasure coaching with him in developing your football skills at quarterback. Gary always put his heart and soul into everything he endeavored. That is the reason I recruited him to guide the reactivated Newark Branch NAACP. Gary will be truly miss by all that came in contact with him. (Andrew E. Haman)

  • My prayers go out to his love ones in this time of loss.

  • Sorry for your loss. Gary will be missed by me and people who were in need of help of any kind through his leadership as an NAACP president for over 30 years. I just found out about his passing on 11/2/2020.
    Cecil C. Wilson Past President
    NAACP Delaware State Conference of Branches & NAACP Central De Branch 2028B

  • Barb
    I have been trying to get in touch with you for some time . We just learned of Gary’s passing
    We are so very sorry about Gary. Our deepest sympathies to you and Wes .
    With our love Diane and Craig

  • I’d like express my deepest condolences to the Hayman family. Gary and I were teammates at Penn State. He was a tremendous athlete, a fierce competitor and an insightful and thoughtful good man.
    All Blessings My Brother

  • I love you coach Hayman. You were the best.

  • I played football with Gary and his older brother Conway at Newark HS from 1966 to 1978. We did not keep in touch after HS, but I remember them both as good guys and great athletes. I was very sad to hear of their recent passing. Rest in peach