Toby Richard Wyatt King
Toby Richard Wyatt King, 65, a multi-lingual association executive who worked in fields as disparate as commerce, natural resources, and musculoskeletal health, died December 29, 2020 in Chicago following a long battle with cancer.

Mr. King was the beloved husband of Judy Hevrdejs-King, the loving father of Olivier, Adele and Magali King, and the adored grandfather of Jacob and Alexia. He is the cherished stepson of Deirdre McSharry, dear brother Matthew King (Debbie), and the much-loved brother-in-law of Thomas Hevrdejs (Jill). He is also survived by nieces Isabella Wagley (Harris), Clementine King (Sam), Anna and Elena Hevrdejs and nephew Rupert King, as well as sisters-in-law Susan Hevrdejs and Alison Hevrdejs, stepsister Emma Beck (Mike) and stepbrother Tim Carroll. His sister Polly, niece Louisa Caroline and stepmother Cherry predeceased him. The support he provided to his extended family is a much-cherished memory.

Toby was born August 3, 1955 to the late Peter James Wyatt King and Grace Margaret King in Bristol, England. He grew up on the Isle of Wight, Wiltshire and Oxfordshire, England, and studied at Stowe School near Buckingham, but soon took his energies to professional associations around the world.

In August 2002, Toby became the first executive director of the U.S. Bone and Joint Initiative (then called the U.S. Bone and Joint Decade), an international collaborative movement created to raise the priority of the musculoskeletal health among researchers, educators, clinical practitioners and patients. "Through his tireless efforts, the USBJD/I was able to launch and maintain programs that benefited a broad array of stakeholders," said Dr. Joshua J. Jacobs, chair of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Rush Medical at Chicago.

A certified association executive and graduate of the IPADE (Pan American Institute for High Business Management) at the Pan American University in Mexico City, his career began as a trainee at the British Chamber of Commerce in Mexico, where he rose to the position of General Manager. Subsequently, he became General Manager of the British-American Chamber of Commerce in Miami, Fla. He later headed north to Canada where he joined the Montreal Board of Trade, then the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum.

He was living in Mexico City at the time of the 1985 earthquake and was also organizing a conference at the Taj Mahal hotel in Mumbai, India during the 2008 terrorist attack. He made little of the help he provided to others in these events, treating them in the manner advocated by Rudyard Kipling's "If-" ("If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster, And treat those two imposters just the same….").

Because of the current restrictions on social gatherings, Mr. King's life will be celebrated later in Chicago, Quebec and England. Memorial donations may be made to the USBJI at

Published by Chicago Tribune on Jan. 5, 2021.
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18 Entries
Judy, I am sorry to be so long in extending my deepest sympathy to you and your family. Toby was an extraordinary man. He and you and all of your loved ones are in my thoughts and prayers.
Margaret Carroll
April 1, 2021
Hazel Wood BJD Canada
January 26, 2021
I will truly miss Toby. His talents came to life when we worked together on the Young Investigator Initiative. He was steady, highly organized and he got everyone working together.
Hazel Wood
January 26, 2021
I am deeply sorry for your loss. I met Toby 18 years ago through an Association Forum networking group. I identified him as an ideal candidate to head the USBJD, and put that recommendation forward to management. I am sure all who knew and worked with Toby over these many years have marveled at his grace, kind nature, and quiet tenacity. I extend to all his family my heartfelt sympathies. He was a wonderful human being.
Lynne Dowling
January 16, 2021
Dear Judy, Just heard of your dear husband´s passing via 4-H House sisters via Zoom. Jon and I live in Zimbabwe although raised our girls in TN. Sending a hug, tears, and prayers as you grieve and treasure stories and memories as time goes on. Love, Kathy
Kathy Burger Christiansen
January 13, 2021
So shocked and saddened to hear of Toby's passing. I knew him from my time at AAOS, and I echo the sentiments testifying to his patience, kindness, warmth, calmness and gentleness. It was always a pleasure to see him in the hallways and hear his stories of devotion to, and pride in, his family. May his family find peace and comfort knowing many people recognize and appreciate the brightness he brought to this earth!
Sheri Pantell
January 12, 2021
My deepest condolences.
Rose Iris Gonzalez - Movement is Life
January 11, 2021
Dear Toby King family, I had the privilege and honor of working with Toby for the past 15 years since USBJD. He was always the consummate gentleman you with empathy and professionalism. A friendly face which I will miss. I accompany you in your burden of grief and sadness. Ramon
Ramon Jimenez MD
January 11, 2021
I had the great pleasure of working with Toby these last few months. I originally met him at the AAOS when he began the USBJD. My sister, Bonnie, and I both worked at the Academy, and anytime we passed Toby in the hall he brought a smile to our faces. His pleasant, polite, and British demeanor were always a treat! I was lucky to work with him on projects intermittently throughout the past, and then again these past three months. Despite what Toby was going through, he took his precious time, and with a keen interest, helped me understand the tasks at hand. He was the most determined "sergeant major" with whom I´ve had the pleasure to work! Toby´s dedication and determination to the USBJI is unmatched. Toby gave me the opportunity to come back to non-profits, and I am ever grateful that I was able to work with him one last time.
Emily Clark
January 9, 2021
I have known Toby since USBJI 2007 class. He is a person who you would like to share your journey with. I am going to miss him a lot.
Leslie Shen
January 8, 2021
I am at a loss to express how shocked and saddened I am by the news of Toby's death. We were flat-mates in Mexico City in the 1980s and Judy will testify what laughs we had and of the friendship the three of us developed. Toby was ever calm under pressure. I was away from the flat on the night of September 18 1985 and will always remember the measured account he gave me the following morning of the earthquake (8.1 on the Richter scale) in the early hours. Our building was officially condemned for several weeks, under the threat of the neighbouring multi-storey block falling on to it. Toby was warm, welcoming and conscientious to the extent that sometimes you might want to shake him and tell him to think a little more of doing things for himself rather than just others. We last met in west London for brunch on a sunny Saturday a couple of summers ago, on an occasion, which, typically, he arranged during a flying visit when he had more than enough other things to do. My experience is that Toby would always find time for you. He was a good friend and will remain a wonderful person to have known.
Peter Chapman
January 8, 2021
Clementine Rosamund
January 5, 2021
I had the privilege of knowing and working with Toby at the USBJD/I since 2004. He was patient in listening to my sometimes crazy ideas. I'll always treasure the time I worked with him. He was such a warm, caring person and will be missed.
Kim Templeton
January 5, 2021
I was able to get to know Toby while working with him at the Academy. He was a kind and gentle soul with incredible stories. He will be greatly missed.
Jonathan Sprague
January 5, 2021
Judy, I was so sad to hear about Toby. Way too vibrant and too young. My thoughts are with you....
barbara melcher
January 5, 2021
I have known Toby since the day he started in the Academy's building. We rode elevators together, shared an occasional joke, and discussed life. Toby will be greatly missed by everyone who knew him.
Olga Foley
January 5, 2021
Hans J Koelsch
January 5, 2021
I am so sorry for your loss. Toby was a good man who made every one around him want to be a better person. My prayers and condolences to the King family. He will be missed but not forgotten.
Anita Cooper
January 5, 2021
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