Enjoy this riveting and concise journey through the life of F.E.D.S. founder and owner Antoine Clark. Antoine held nothing as he shares of growing up in a single parent home where mom played the role of dad, best friend and a strong disciplinarian. Babysitting his brother, Antoine passionately embraced his big brother role and took his brother wherever he went and do whatever he did. A very focused and driven young man, Antoine was never distracted by the drug infested surroundings he grew up in. Women were his distraction, this led him to becoming a dad while in high school and welcomed the birth of his daughter. Antoine speaks eloquently of that time and the emotions felt by both him and his girlfriend as they both were still in high school and now parents. This experience transformed him into a man, as he did not want to neglect his role nor his daughter unlike his experience with his dad neglecting him. Unable to complete high school due to his responsibility, Antoine goes right to work to provide for his family. Inspired by Larry Flint, Antoine shares about the birth F.E.D.S. The name which came to him as he wrapped up a meeting in the village (NYC) at a restaurant called FEZ. F.E.D.S. magazine became the bible of the streets. Overcoming all the issues from publishing to distribution Antoine did it so he could tell the story of gangsters like Alpo, Rich Porter, Pistol Pete and Santra Rucker to name a few. Great content and connecting with the right people allowed Antoine Clark to tell the story of the street, not to glorify it but to deter others from making the same mistakes.
Born and raised in Clermont St. Ann, Jamaica to a mother who gave him away at 2 years old, Don Reid had no immediate family members. A poor, malnourished little boy, he found himself being mothered by Miss Louise (Miss Lu), a complete stranger.
Don reflects on his past, including going to Clermont All-Age School; which was approximately 4 miles from his house. He walked it bare-footed as he had no shoes. In his small community, he was known as the little boy that was given away. However, he was extremely bright and well read. A spelling bee champion and involved in the schools' Drama Club, Don Reid did not allow his circumstances to dictate his future. Don shares of his 1st unconditional love and support system, which came from Rev. Tuller, the local pastor from his church. "I'm proud of you", words that stuck with Don as he reflects on the impact of that relationship; Rev Teller treated him like a son. High school was a complete 180 degree turn for Don. The onslaught of puberty & the assumed freedom to attend or not to attend high school had him on a path to failure. Don recalls a high school friend who embraced him unfortunately was a certified loser. Due to his influence on Don, they would ‘go to school and do everything; except go to school'. Certified the class dunce, he was still able to finish 19th out 40 students.
After a stern and sincere discussion with the principal, coupled with the threat of Miss Lu's belt, Don straightened up and became a straight-A student. Don shares his journey into the medical field via a threat, and his transition into the banking profession. The undeserved care and advice from the people God has placed so strategically throughout his life allowed Don to confidently walk through all doors that were opening.
"Throughout all these experiences, I have learned to laugh at myself", among the many jewels dropped by this ‘little boy that was given away', now known as Don Reid. Enjoy this riveting, honest and hilarious SQR Podcast production.