Industry Icon John Weston Passes Away

At the age of 89, John Weston passes away. Weston's Automotive was one of the founding members of the Automotive Retailers Association (ARA) 70 years ago.

Shortly before the ARA’s 70th Anniversary Celebration and AGM, Weston’s Automotive Ltd. announced sad news about the passing of its former owner and ARA Honorary Member, John Weston. Seventy years ago, Weston’s Automotive was one of the ARA’s founding members. John helped shape our association, and he remained a loyal member until his final day.

In the beginning, John’s Burnaby-located mechanical repair shop was run by his father, Sam Weston. Sam started the business in 1929 as Weston’s Service Station with automotive repair bays, a gas station, and home oil sales. When John took it over in 1956, he expanded the family business to a full-service automotive repair shop.

Like his father, John was actively involved in advocating on behalf of the automotive service industry. John also served on the ARA’s executive board of directors for many years. “[John] contributed considerably to the ARA, especially to mechanical repair business,” remembered Ed Hendricks, ARA past-chairman.

When the ARA celebrated its 40th anniversary, John spearheaded a special anniversary project—a restoration of a classic car from 1951, the year the association was incorporated. The car restoration was the result of the combined efforts of ARA members, and it was intended to promote awareness of the ARA.

John Weston was in charge of a special committee that was responsible for financing and organizing a car restoration on the occasion of the ARA’s 40th anniversary.
The restored car was then unveiled during the ARA’s annual convention in October, 1991

The ARA is, and always has been, an association of automotive entrepreneurs who work together to achieve a thriving industry. John was one of those iconic entrepreneurs that made the industry proud.

“John was a very successful auto repair business owner; his customers loved him and returned time after time,” said Hendricks.

Over decades of serving the motoring public in Burnaby, Weston’s Automotive built a reputation of being a trusted and professional family-run business. The level of quality repairs that John’s father started 93 years ago, John further elevated, and he expanded the services provided.

John not only had the skill to grow and run a successful business, he also had the great asset of all—his likeable personality. “In addition to his keen business sense and ability to fix almost anything, John was a very kind man, a loyal and trustworthy friend, always willing to lend a hand, and above all a devoted husband, father, and grandfather,” said Colene Weston, John’s daughter-in-law.

“John had an engaging personality, was very friendly, funny, humble, and tolerated of everyone around him. Everybody liked John,” Hendricks testified. “When John spoke to/at a crowd of people, he didn’t need notes. He just spoke from the heart and could relate to everyone in the audience—the shop janitor, technician, owner, or executives.”

Continuing with its tradition and reputation for excellence, Weston’s Automotive is currently owned by Brent Weston, John’s son. As a third generation of the family operation, Brent makes sure that customers are receiving the same quality service as they did from his father John and grandfather Sam. If the loyalty of the customers is any indication, Brent is more than successful in continuing the family legacy.


Originally published in Automotive Retailer (1991)

The ARA is very saddened by John’s passing, but it is also very pleased that the business he built is moving forward under Brent’s leadership. Weston’s Automotive is a superb embodiment of quality work, which is still the order of the day. The ARA extends condolences to the Weston family and the entire team at Weston’s Automotive. We wish them many more successful years to come.

John Weston
April 5, 1933 – September 22, 2022