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Obituaries

Ruby H. Walden, a force for community betterment in Suffolk, dies at 99

“I cannot do everything, but I can do some things. What I can do, I ought to do. What I ought to do, with the help of God, I will do.” Those are the words Ruby Holland Walden lived by ...

Principal Joe Clark, who inspired film ‘Lean on me,’ dies

Joe Louis Clark, the baseball bat and bullhorn-wielding principal whose unwavering commitment to his students and uncompromising disciplinary methods inspired the 1989 film “Lean on Me,” died at his Florida home on Tuesday, Dec. 29, 2020, after a long battle ...

K.C. Jones, who won Olympic, NCAA and NBA championships, dies at 88

K.C. Jones and the word “winner” were always synonymous.

Tuskegee Airman dies days before his 100th birthday and ceremony honoring military service

Tuskegee Airman Alfred Thomas Farrar died on Thursday, Dec. 17, 2020, in Lynchburg only days before a ceremony planned to honor his service in the program that famously trained Black military pilots during World War II. He was 99.

Thomas ‘Tiny’ Lister, an athlete who rose to fame as a bully on the silver screen, dies at 62

Thomas “Tiny” Lister, a track and field champion, professional wrestler and actor, died Thursday, Dec. 10, 2020, at his home in Marina del Ray, Calif.

Former Newport News Delegate Mamye BaCote, a member of the Richmond 34, dies at 81

As a student at Virginia Union University, Mamye Edmondson BaCote took part in the lunch counter sit-ins led by VUU students to end whites-only, sit-down service at restaurants and lunch counters in Downtown.

Trailblazing Black country singer Charley Pride, winner of 3 Grammys from 30 No. 1 hits, succumbs to COVID-19 complications

Charley Pride, one of country music’s first Black superstars whose rich baritone on such hits as “Kiss an Angel Good Morning” helped sell millions of records and made him the first Black member of the Country Music Hall of Fame, ...

Dr. Willie Woodson, minister and community activist, succumbs at 72

Dr. Willie Woodson wore multiple hats as a Richmond faith leader.

Martha Norris Gilbert, who led the former Virginia Department for Children, dies at 82

Martha Norris Gilbert, who led the first Virginia agency that focused on children and was involved in expanding pre-school programming in public school divisions across the state, has died.

Olympic champion and American hero Rafer Johnson dies

Rafer Johnson, widely regarded as among the greatest athletes of all time and the man who helped subdue Robert F. Kennedy’s assassin in 1968, died Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020, in Sherman Oaks, Calif. He was 86.

Dr. Andrew M. Mosley Jr., retired pastor of Quioccasin Baptist Church, dies at 80

Dr. Andrew Monroe Mosley Jr., who served as pastor of Quioccasin Baptist Church in Henrico County for three decades during his 52-year ministry career, has died.

Faye B. Walker, a backbone of the African dance and culture group Ezibu Muntu, dies at 66

Faye Bettina Walker spent 47 years teaching and spreading interest in African dance in the Richmond area and beyond.

Bruce Boynton, who inspired 1961 Freedom Rides after Richmond arrest, dies at 83

Bruce Carver Boynton, a civil rights pioneer from Alabama who inspired the landmark “Freedom Rides” of 1961, died Monday, Nov. 23, 2020. He was 83.

David N. Dinkins, NYC’s first Black mayor, dies at 93

Few American leaders have faced the battery of urban ills that confronted David N. Dinkins when he became New York’s first Black mayor in 1990.

Tuskegee Airman Frank Macon dies

One of only two original, remaining Tuskegee Airmen in Colorado has died. Frank Macon died Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020, at his home in Colorado Springs. He was 97.