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Charity Mahouna Hicks joins the ancestors

Justice warrior Charity Mahouna Hicks joined the ancestors, July 8, 2014. Hicks was hit by a vehicle in New York City, May 31 which left her in a coma. Hicks is a well known and regarded community activist who was also policy director for the East Michigan Environmental Action Council (EMEAC). Hicks was raised on Detroit’s lower eastside near the Detroit River which contributed to her love for the environme ...

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RIP Ruby Dee Davis, 1922-2014

Over the years, Ruby Dee has become a part of all our lives, because we have watched and identified with her in so many movies and at so many civil rights demonstrations. Despite her fame and artistry, she was extraordinarily unpretentious and could have been our sister, daughter, girlfriend. Ruby loved fresh ideas and was especially fond of Jimmy Boggs. I am not sure how she even knew he was dying, but two ...

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Remembering banking and music business icon Don Davis

Don Davis, pioneering artist and businessman, joined the ancestors June 5 at age 75. Davis was born Oct. 25, 1938 in Detroit. He spent nearly 30 years as chairman and CEO of First Independence Bank, Michigan’s only Black bank. In the 1970s, First Independence played a role in fighting redlining and providing loans to Detroit’s African American community. Davis was also an award winning writer and producer. ...

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Lorenzo Taylor

The portrait of Lorenzo James Taylor, Jr. by the artist Charles McGee was purchased in the late 60s for a few dollars. But even in the festival days, when no one had a lot of money, McGee was great and Taylor had an eye for what was fine in art. The drawing (shown here) recently hung in the entry of the “Taylor Room” at Arts Extended Gallery which was co-founded by a group of 14 teachers in 1958. ...

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Fearless Afro-American foreign correspondent William Worthy dies

William Worthy, a pioneering correspondent for the Baltimore Afro-American who defied the U.S. government in the Cold War era to report on Communist Cuba, China, the Soviet Union and Vietnam, died last month at the age of 92. Worthy gained worldwide attention in 1961 when he traveled to Cuba without a passport and interviewed Fidel Castro two years after the Cuban Revolution. He was arrested upon his return ...

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RIP General Baker and Yuri Kochiyama

We’ve lost two more stalwarts in the ongoing struggle for a new world of peace and social justice: General Baker and Yuri Kochiyama. Our hearts go out to Marian Kramer, Gen’s wife and comrade, and their children and grandchildren. The last time General and I talked was four years ago on June 19, 2010. It was the night before the opening of the 2nd U.S. Social Forum. ...

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Dr. Maya Angelou joins the ancestors

“With her passing and that of other lights — General Baker, Queen Mother Mabel Williams, Amiri Baraka, Chokwe Lumumba, Vincent Harding — we are witnessing the closing of one era in our struggle for higher humanity, and the dawn of a new time. I am grateful dear Maya will be present in spirit to help us chart the journey.” ...

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Empress Verdiacee Tiari  uncovered hidden history

Her Highness Verdiacee Tiari Washitaw Turner Goston El-Bey, the empress of the Washitaw de Dugdahmoundyah Empire and leader of the Emperial Washitaw Nation of Muurs, made her transition in April 2014, completing the lifetime of a matriarch who was celebrated around the world. In her time, Empress Verdiacee was a published author, archivist, historian, international diplomat, mayor, judge, business woman and ...

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Remembering Cincinnati civil rights pioneer, Juanita Adams

Cincinnati civil rights pioneer Juanita Adams joined the ancestors May 23. Ms. Adams was a long-time ambassador and supporter of the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center in Cincinnati and her influence on both the center and on the city of Cincinnati will truly be missed. Early in life she ignored advice that being an African American would limit her career options. Ms. Adams spanned a 40-year caree ...

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