In Memoriam

Remembering those who served to make our lives richer and more fulfilling.

Rest in peace our good and faithful servants, we will take it from here.

Iconic Black Actor and ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’ Star AndrĂ© Braugher Dies

By Diana Dasrath and Dennis Romero “Brooklyn Nine-Nine” actor Andre Braugher has died after a brief illness, a representative said. He was 61. Details about the illness were not available. Representative Jennifer Allen confirmed the news, saying Braugher died Monday. His two best-known roles were police officers. Braugher won an Emmy for his depiction of police detective Frank Pembleton on the 1990s series “Homicide: Life on the Street.” And he came to be known to a new generation of TV viewers in 2013 as a deadpan police captain on NBC’s “Brooklyn Nine-Nine.” “Andre Braugher was the actor that others in the profession would

Oprah’s father Vernon Winfrey dead at 88


By Jessica Bennett Oprah Winfrey has confirmed the death of her father, Vernon Winfrey, shortly after local Nashville news outlets reported his passing Friday night. He was 88 years old. “Vernon Winfrey 1933-2022,” the media maven, 68, captioned a video of her dad from July 4th, revealing that their immediate family was aware that he was battling cancer. “Less than a week ago we honored my father in his own backyard. My friend and gospel singer Wintley Phipps saluted him with song,” she continued. “He FELT the love and reveled in it until he could no longer speak. “Yesterday with

Desmond Tutu, anti-apartheid leader and voice of justice, dead at 90


By Todd Leopold, Larry Madowo and Jessie Yeung, Archbishop Desmond Tutu, the Nobel Peace Prize-winning Anglican cleric whose good humor, inspiring message and conscientious work for civil and human rights made him a revered leader during the struggle to end apartheid in his native South Africa, has died. He was 90. In a statement confirming his death on Sunday, South African President Cyril Ramaphosa expressed his condolences to Tutu’s family and friends, calling him “a patriot without equal.” “A man of extraordinary intellect, integrity and invincibility against the forces of apartheid, he was also tender and vulnerable in his compassion for those

Lee Elder, the first Black golfer to play at the Masters, dies at 87


By Ben Morse, Lee Elder, who was the first Black golfer to play at the Masters, has died at the age of 87, the PGA Tour confirmed on Monday. Elder broke through Augusta’s race barrier at the 1975 edition of the famous competition. He was honored at the 2021 Masters, joining Jack Nicklaus and Gary Player as an honorary starter in the ceremonial first tee shot to begin the tournament. Elder told CNN in 2015 that making his Masters debut in Augusta, Georgia, was a “very nerve-racking” experience. “I was shaking so badly, I did not know if I was even going to be able

Carrie Meek, trailblazing Black former congresswoman, dies at 95


By Paul LeBlanc and Sarah Fortinsky, Former Rep. Carrie Meek, who broke barriers throughout her winding political career as the daughter of a sharecropper and granddaughter of a slave, died Sunday in her Miami home. She was 95. Meek’s death came after a “long illness,” family spokesperson Adam Sharon said in a statement describing the late Florida Democrat’s “trailblazing” life and legacy. Her children Lucia Davis-Raiford, Sheila Davis Kinui, and retired Rep. Kendrick B. Meek of Florida provided a statement about her legacy to CNN. It read: “Carrie Meek was our family matriarch who fulfilled this role for the entire

Ronnie Wilson, founding member of The Gap Band, dead at 73


By Jack Guy, Ronnie Wilson, founding member of R&B group The Gap Band, has died at the age of 73. His passing was confirmed by his wife, Linda Boulware-Wilson, in a Facebook post published Tuesday. “The love of my life was called home this morning, at 10:01am. Please continue to pray for The Wilson, Boulware, and Collins family, while we mourn his passing,” she wrote. “Ronnie Wilson was a genius with creating, producing, and playing the flugelhorn, Trumpet, keyboards, and singing music, from childhood to his early seventies. He will be truly missed!!!” Wilson formed The Gap Band in the late 1960s along with

Colin Powell, military leader and first Black US secretary of state, dies after complications from Covid-19


By Devan Cole, Colin Powell, the first Black US secretary of state whose leadership in several Republican administrations helped shape American foreign policy in the last years of the 20th century and the early years of the 21st, has died from complications from Covid-19, his family said on Facebook. He was 84. “General Colin L. Powell, former U.S. Secretary of State and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, passed away this morning due to complications from Covid 19,” the Powell family wrote on Facebook. “We have lost a remarkable and loving husband, father, grandfather and a great American,” they

Civil rights leader Timuel Black dies at 102


By Carma Hassan and Christina Carrega, Civil rights leader Timuel Black died Wednesday at the age of 102, according to a statement from the University of Chicago where he obtained a master’s degree in 1954. “He marched with Martin Luther King Jr., campaigned for Chicago mayor Harold Washington, mentored a young Barack Obama and helped bring the Obama Presidential Center to the South Side,” the university said of the civil rights leader in a statement. Black also helped end segregation in the Chicago Public Schools district through his work as an educator and administrator, the university said. Black is survived by

Melvin Van Peebles, trailblazing director and Black cinema champion, has died


By Megan Thomas, Melvin Van Peebles, a trailblazing African-American director who helped champion a new wave of modern Black cinema in the 1970s, has died, his son announced Wednesday. He was 89. Van Peebles, father of actor and director Mario Van Peebles, died at his home on Tuesday night, according to a statement shared on social media. “Dad knew that Black images matter. If a picture is worth a thousand words, what was a movie worth? We want to be the success we see, thus we need to see ourselves being free,” Mario Van Peebles said of his father’s work



By Tennessee State University Media Room Ernest “Rip” Patton, a former TSU student and member of the 1960s Nashville Freedom Riders, passed on August 23. The University is remembering Patton as a stalwart of the civil rights movement who dedicated his life to fighting for equality and justice for people of color. Patton was buried Friday in Nashville after homegoing celebrations at Gordon Memorial United Methodist Church. He was 81. TSU President Glenda Glover said Patton was unyielding and showed remarkable courage in risking imprisonment, injury and even death to ensure that blacks were treated fairly.  Glover says Patton was

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