Richard Williams, 39 – Heart Failure, Disney Fantasy Passenger, June 15, 2015, Time of Death 8:00-5:00.
Richard Williams was not feeling well earlier on the day of his death, so he had taken Trayton to the day care center aboard Disney Fantasy. When he didn’t return for his son, the cruise ship crew became alarmed and sent someone to his cabin. Inside the cabin, they found Richard Williams dead.
As of Wednesday, June 17, 2015, Disney Fantasy is still at sea, with the cruise ship crew taking care of his son Trayton who is now orphaned at sea. Richard Williams’ body will be repatriated to the U.S. and flown back home to family back in Missouri.
Disney Fantasy embarked from Port Canaveral, Florida on Saturday June 13, for a 7-Night Eastern Caribbean Cruise.
Richard Williams is survived by his brother Roy Williams, who owns and operates Fiddler’s Restaurant in Dexter which his parents opened in the 80s.
His parents, Marilyn Williams and Rick Williams have both already passed away. Marilyn Williams was well-known in Dexter, having served the 159th District as state representative from 1991 until 2000.
The family has set up a Gofundme page for Trayton’s college education on June 26, 2015. They say on the Gofundme page, “In early April our nephew, Tayton Williams, lost his mother due to illness. In June his father, Richard Williams decided to take Tayton on a Disney cruise to help with the healing process. What was supposed to be a trip of happiness and lifelong memories ended in tragedy when Richard was found in his stateroom and had passed away unexpectedly. After learning of the loss of Richard, many family members came together with the help of the Disney Cruiseline on a plan to get Tayton home from the Grand Caymans. At the age of 6, Tayton has suffered more heartache than any child should. He will be raised by his Aunt and Uncle, Roy and Shaunti Williams. We have had an overwhelming flow of love and support from friends and family who have asked what they can do to help, so for the future of Tayton we have started a college fund. Thank you for your continued prayers and strength during this difficult time.”
There is an update to the page which says, “Our family would like to thank each and every one of you that has contributed to Taytons college fund. We are so grateful to have such a support system. Tayton seems to be adjusting well. There will be many tough days ahead, but I believe in my heart that he knows he is loved and safe with Uncle Roy and Aunt Shaunti.”
As of January 1, 2016 the GoFundMe for Tayton Williams Donation Requests donations were $4,480 by 49 donors with a goal of $10,000.
Richard Williams, 39, from Dexter, Missouri was aboard Disney Cruise Line’s Disney Fantasy with his son on Monday June 15, 2015 when he passed away suddenly in his cruise ship cabin while Disney Fantasy was sailing towards the Cayman Islands.
Richard Williams was a single parent raising his son Tayton Williams, 5, alone after Tayton Williams’ mother Kerri Jo Stearns, 36, passed away two months prior at Missouri Delta Medical Center in Sikeston, Missouri on April 6, 2015. Her cause of death was listed as heart failure, according to her friends.