CONWAY, S.C. — A popular entertainer known in the Myrtle Beach LGBT community as Valerie “Sunshyne” Tate was killed in a fatal car accident in the early morning hours of June 12.
In memoriam: Sunshyne
Jason Wayne Hucks performed as female impersonator Tate at two Myrtle Beach area clubs, Time Out! and Club Hushh.
According to a report in the Myrtle Beach Sun News, speed played a factor in the car wreck that killed Hucks at about 6:15 a.m. June 12. Police reports indicate the sport utility vehicle he was driving hit a pole just off Mr. Joe White Ave. in Myrtle Beach.
Hucks reportedly lost control of the vehicle near an intersection with Jackson St., causing the vehicle to clip the curb, hit a pole and flip several times.
The impact of the vehicle knocked the pole 93 feet.
Hucks, who was pronounced dead at the scene, died of multiple trauma injuries.
Born in Conway, S.C., Hucks was a graduate of Carolina Forest High School where he was a honor member of the Thespian Honor Society and a graduate of Carolina College of Cosmotology.
In addition to his performance career, he was an avid music lover and enjoyed singing, dancing and playing the piano.
Hucks is survived by his parents, James Wayne and Linda Jo Johnson Hucks, one brother, Jamey Hucks and his wife, April; two nephews, Aidan Hucks and Ashton Hucks and numerous aunts, uncles and cousins.
Funeral services were held for Hucks June 14 at Goldfinch Funeral Home in Conway.
As evidenced by the more than 50 messages that were signed in to his obituary memorial at www.myrtlebeachonline.com, Hucks was well-liked as a high school student, and in his later years at Carolina College. Fans of his many performances left behind sentiments, as well.
“He was a very bright young man,” wrote one friend, “which put a smile on all of our faces whether it be onstage or off the stage.”
“Every time I see a rainbow I will remember … Jason,” wrote another. “Thinking of you now, I can only smile at all the memories I have of you. You were my partner in crime and I already miss you so much.”
Hucks had just turned 24 the day before his death.