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R&B and gospel singer, David Peaston, dies at age 54

David Peaston

David Peaston, 54, an R&B and gospel singer who propelled into the spotlight with appearances on “Showtime at the Apollo” during the late ’80s, died Wednesday, February 1, 2012 from complications of diabetes at his home in St. Louis. David spent several years as an educator in the St. Louis Public Schools.

Mr. Peaston lived with diabetes since the ’90s, and his right leg was amputated at the knee in March 2004; his left leg also was later amputated.

Mr. Peaston, son of Martha Bass of the Clara Ward singers, tried his hand on TV’s “Showtime at the Apollo,” where he wowed audiences with a priceless rendition of “God Bless the Child.”

He later became a Soul Train Award winner , well known for his top charting hits, “Can I,” “Two Wrongs (Don’t Make a Right)” and “We’re All in This Together.”

Mr. Peaston was also a veteran of traveling gospel plays such as “Momma Don’t”, in which he costarred in with singer Cheryl Pepsii Riley.

Singer Cheryl Pepsii Riley, described her longtime friend by saying, “this man with the hearty laugh, great sense of humor, that incredible voice, and he was the most amazing friend.”

During an interview in 2011, Peaston’s wife spoke on her husband’s annointing, “These men are grounded in God. I hope people leave knowing who they live for and what they live for and who protects their life,” Marilyn said.

She continued, “When David was with MCA, we were offered a lot of things – from drugs to prostitutes. If you are not grounded, you can easily be lost without even knowing it. I hope that people that know that music – like God – is good.”

Funeral services will be private. But there will be a musical tribute to Peaston at 4 p.m. Feb. 11 at his church, Shalom City of Peace (Lindbergh campus) in St. Louis.

In addition to his sister, among the survivors are his wife, Marilyn; two sons, Daniel Peaston and Darrius Peaston of St. Louis; and a granddaughter, Darriya Peaston of St. Louis.