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Obituaries

Jean L. Fountain, longtime educator, civic leader, dies at 75

Jean Lankford Fountain wore different hats as an educator, but always under the banner of Richmond Public Schools.

Lillie L. Taylor, longtime RPS administrator, succumbs at 88

The life and faith of Lillie Lipscomb Taylor, a former teacher and longtime supervisor of business and economic education programs for Richmond Public Schools, was celebrated during a funeral service Thursday, April 26, 2018, at Great Hope Baptist Church.

Blanche A.B. Washington, retired teacher, musician dies at 86

Blanche Amanda Barcroft Washington spent 36 years teaching elementary students reading, writing and the rudiments of science.

Rita J.T. Williams, former teacher, Head Start instructor, dies at 66

Carver Elementary School is mourning the loss of one of staff members, Rita Jane Taylor Williams, who succumbed to illness on Wednesday, April 18, 2018. She was 66.

Yvonne Staples of Staple Singers fame dies at 80

Yvonne Staples, whose voice and business acumen powered the success of the Staple Singers, her family’s hit-making gospel group that topped the charts in the early 1970s with the song “I’ll Take You There,” has died. She was 80.

Former First Lady Barbara Bush dies

A private funeral for former First Lady Barbara Bush, the only American woman to see her husband and son both sworn in as president, will be held on Saturday, April 21, at a Houston church where her family has been ...

‘Mother of South Africa’ dies at 81

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, who emerged as a combative anti-apartheid campaigner during her former husband Nelson Mandela’s decades in jail but whose reputation was later tarnished by allegations of violence, died on Monday, April 2, 2018, at the age of 81.

Annie Giles, community activist, dies at 81

As a minister’s daughter, Annie Marie Turner Giles felt driven to help others overcome problems and challenges in the Whitcomb Court public housing community in the city’s East End.

Journalist Les Payne, a founder of NABJ, dies at 76

Les Payne, an intrepid Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist who helped pave the way for another generation of African-American journalists as one of the founders and a former president of the National Association of Black Journalists, died on Monday, March 19, 2018. ...

Dr. Marshall Banks, retired urologist and Roman Catholic deacon, dies at 78

Dr. Marshall D. “Billy” Banks devoted his life to ministering to people as a physician and as a deacon at Cathedral of the Sacred Heart near Virginia Commonwealth University.

Former rapper Craig Mack dies at 47

Former rapper Craig Mack, best known for the platinum 1994 hit “Flava in Ya Ear” has died in South Carolina. Colleton County Coroner Richard Harvey says the 47-year-old Mr. Mack died at his home in Walterboro around 9 p.m. Monday, ...

Va. native Floyd Carter Sr., one of the last of the Tuskegee Airmen, dies at 95

Floyd Carter Sr., one of the last of the Tuskegee Airmen, died Thursday, March 8, in New York, where he served with the New York Police Department for 27 years. He was 95.

Rev. Craig A. Matthews, longtime artistic director of the Richmond Boys Choir, dies at 63

The 18-member Richmond Boys Choir is celebrating the life of their caring and talented artistic director, the Rev. Craig Alexander Matthews.

Dr. Grace Harris remembered for her ‘spirit of hope’

Dr. Grace E. Harris, whose life and career stretched from the roads of rural Halifax County to the halls of the Virginia State Capitol, was remembered last Saturday as more than 200 people, including family, friends, legislators and educators, assembled ...

Allie Ragin Jr., teacher, sports coach, dies at 76

Allie Ragin Jr. used his education and athletic skills to benefit and support youth sports programs in Richmond.