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Obituaries

Dr. Grace E. Harris, whose leadership helped transform VCU, dies at 84

Grace Edmondson Harris was rejected when she first sought admission to what is now Virginia Commonwealth University because she was African-American.

Battinto L. Batts Sr., former director of cooperative education at VSU, dies at 70

Battinto Leroy “Tunky” Batts Sr. helped hundreds of Virginia State University students graduate and find their career paths.

Flags at half-staff in memory, honor of Dr. Walker

Virginia’s state flag will be flown at half-staff over the Capitol and throughout the commonwealth in honor of the late civil rights icon Dr. Wyatt Tee Walker.

Dennis Edwards, former member of The Temptations, dies at 74

Grammy winner Dennis Edwards, who performed lead vocals for some of the chart-topping Motown singles recorded by The Temptations in the 1960s and 1970s, has died at age 74.

William T. Stone Sr., former substitute judge, Williamsburg funeral home owner, dies at 87

William Thomas Stone Sr. made history in 1968, when he was one of the first African-Americans appointed to the judiciary in Virginia.

Retired teacher Margaret Dungee, 88, dies

Margaret Inez Rollins Dungee felt called to teach. The Richmond native “loved children, delighted in seeing them learn and went to long lengths to see others obtain college educations,” her daughter, Veronica D. Abrams, stated.

AME Bishop John Hurst Adams succumbs at 90

Bishop John Hurst Adams, a nationwide religious and civil rights leader who was a strong voice for removing the Confederate flag from the South Carolina State House dome, died Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018. He was 90.

Hugh Masekela, South African jazz musician instrumental in anti-apartheid fight, dies at 78

Trumpeter and singer Hugh Masekela, known as the “father of South African jazz” who used his music in the fight against apartheid, has died after a decade-long fight with prostate cancer, his family said on Tuesday. He was 78.

Robert M. Davis Sr., founder of construction company, dies at 74

Robert Michael Davis Sr. left his mark on hundreds of homes in Richmond and Washington. For 50 years, he was involved in building, renovating and improving residences with a quality that kept him in demand. His record in home construction ...

Dorothy Olivia Fletcher Jefferson, 78, longtime financial secretary at 31st St. Baptist Church, dies

Dorothy Olivia Fletcher Jefferson performed one last service for Thirty-first Street Baptist Church when she died. She brought together a pastor and congregation that has faced division and discord.

Gospel star Edwin Hawkins dies at 74

Edwin Hawkins, the gospel star best known for the crossover hit “Oh Happy Day” and as a major force for contemporary inspirational music, died Monday, Jan. 15, 2018, at age 74.

Roland ‘Fatty’ Taylor, guard with the former Virginia Squires, dies at 71

Roland Morris “Fatty” Taylor, who starred for the Virginia Squires died Thursday, Dec. 7, 2017, in Denver following a lengthy illness.

William ‘Dill’ Dillon, former VUU football standout, dies at 59

Virginia Union University has lost one of its all-time athletic heroes. William Jerome “Dill” Dillon, 59, died Saturday, Dec. 16, 2017, at his home in Henrico County following a lengthy illness. Mr. Dillon was a three-time Associated Press Little All-American ...

Rev. Curtis W. Harris, civil rights activist, 1st black Hopewell mayor, dies at 93

The Rev. Curtis W. Harris Sr. devoted his life to battling the racism and bigotry that oppressed African-Americans in Hopewell and across Virginia.

Simeon Booker, ‘dean of black journalists,’ succumbs at 99

Simeon S. Booker Jr. never lived in Richmond during his nearly 100 years on Earth. Still, at the height of his career, it seemed he was always in town somewhere.

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