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Cameron J. Brooks
November 17, 1977 ~ September 1, 2023 (age 45) 45 Years Old
27 Trees, Flowers, or Condolences have been shared with support of Cameron's family - View on Tribute Wall
Read more about the life story of Cameron and share your memory.
Born November 17, 1977, Cameron crossed the Rainbow Bridge shortly before 1 a.m. on September 1, 2023 to round up our beloved four-leggers before continuing on.
“Do all the good you can—In all the ways you can—At all the seasons you can—To all the
people you can—And as long as you can.”
The provenance of this quote is murky, but it could have been written for Cameron Brooks. He lived by those words. Anyone who knew Cameron understood immediately.
Cameron, 45, got active in politics when he arrived in Knoxville in 1996 to study political science at the University of Tennessee. The Bristol native was the founder of the Alliance for
Hope, now the Progressive Student Alliance, which launched the Living Wage campaign and the United Campus Workers where he fought for fair wages and working conditions for university employees.
He earned a degree in political science in 2000, worked for the College of Social Work for two years and then moved his activism beyond the university community, serving three terms on the Knox County Election Commission and two terms as Knox County Democratic Party chair.
In 2015, within minutes of the United States Supreme Court’s ruling upholding the validity of same-sex marriage, Wes texted Cameron:
WK: I guess we are getting married, huh?
Within two weeks they were married in a civil ceremony, and their marriage was blessed before God and celebrated by hundreds of loved ones at St. James Episcopal Church later that fall.
During their 19 years together, Cameron and Wes shared their home with a total of seven dogs – Berkeley, Betty, Michael, Prince, Samuel, Annabelle, and Lyndon: all rescues, and mostly golden
retrievers. Cameron has sponsored so many animal rescue fundraising activities that it is almost impossible to list them all.
Five years ago, he left the non-profit world and became a real estate agent, primarily with Realty Executive Partners, where he was able to incorporate his work, frequently partnering with
colleague Lisa Vineyard, who has become a close friend and ally.
Last year, Cameron made the decision to run for one of the at-large seats on City Council. He mounted a vigorous shoe leather campaign, personally knocking on more than a thousand doors.
He was in his element – meeting new friends and learning about ways to help.
He never quit hoping, even when a sudden health crisis put an abrupt end to his door-to-door campaign. On August 21, three days after he began chemotherapy, he shared this message:
“Although I have not been able to campaign as I planned, I will stay in the race for Knoxville City Council At Large, Seat A. It’s important to me that the campaign we have built over the past
year continue on. I remain committed to giving working people a voice on City Council. Please pray that my health improves so I can get back to where I once belonged.”
He would want his friends and supporters to keep the faith, practice kindness and continue the fight for a better Knoxville for all, whether they walk on two legs or four. Those who wish to
honor his love of animals are invited to donate to Young-Williams Animal Center or to an animal rescue organization of their choice.
Left to mourn his passing are his husband Wesley Knott, parents, Jane and John Brooks; brother and sister-in-law, Aaron and Allison Brooks; niece and nephew Gracie and Landon Brooks,
aunts, Shella Loughran, Pat Combs and Anne Martin and a whole world of friends. Wes especially thanks Roy Wood, Aaron Brooks, Harold & Geri Knott, and Mona Davis who would
drop everything at a moment’s notice to aid in Cameron’s caregiving over the last month. Also thanks to Linda Haney, the Reverend Harold Middlebrook, and other who gave much needed
wisdom and guidance to Wes as he navigated the wild rapids of our healthcare system.
A celebration to remember Cameron is being planned and will be announced in the coming days. Memorial donations to Young-Williams Animal Center, GoNorth Animal Transport, or
other animal welfare organizations are encouraged in lieu of flowers.
Gentry Griffey Funeral Chapel is honored to serve the Brooks family and invites you to sign the online registry.