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Obituaries

Thomas ‘T.C.’ Harrell, co-founder and former owner of Carolina Bar-B-Que, dies at 86

Thomas Christopher Harrell was the barbecue man of Church Hill for 44 years. Known to customers and friends as “T.C.,” the no-nonsense, though kindly Army veteran served up his own creations and family recipes for tangy, vinegar-based pork barbecue, ribs, ...

John E. Wilson, oldest living Harlem Globetrotter, dies in Chester

John E. Wilson, who was the oldest living Harlem Globetrotter, has died at age 91. Known as “Jumpin’ Johnny” for his uncanny leaping ability, Mr. Wilson died Friday, Jan. 11, 2019, at his home in Chester, where he was living ...

Barbara B. Abernathy Ross, longtime Carver community activist, dies at 77

When Virginia Commonwealth University sought to expand its campus north of Broad Street in the 1990s, the university hit a stonewall — civic activist Barbara Beatrice Abernathy Ross. As president of the Carver Area Civic Improvement League, or CACIL, Ms. ...

Fay A. Howlette, manager of her husband’s optometry practice, dies at 89

Fay Anderson Howlette aided her husband, the late Dr. John L. Howlette Sr., in offering a new option for eye care in Richmond before the start of the Civil Rights Movement.

Richard Overton, oldest World War II vet, oldest man in U.S., dies at 112

Richard Overton, the nation’s oldest World War II veteran who was also believed to be the oldest living man in the United States, died Thursday, Dec. 27, 2018, a family member said. He was 112.

Jeffrey A. Goode, area wedding and funeral singer and member of Bak ’n Da Day, dies at 57

Jeffrey Antoine Goode regularly sang at funerals, weddings and other family and community events and was a tenor for 18 years with the popular Richmond a cappella quintet Bak ’n Da Day that serves up Motown, R&B and Broadway show ...

William Lomax, longtime barber in Jackson Ward, dies at 87

Longtime Richmond barber and NAACP stalwart William Lomax has died. Mr. Lomax, who was best known for his barbershop in Jackson Ward, succumbed to illness Friday, Dec. 21, in hospice in Henrico County. He was 87.

Grammy winning singer Nancy Wilson dies at 81

Grammy award-winning singer Nancy Wilson, whose silky vocals turned out hits ranging from R&B to jazz and funk, died Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018, at her home in Pioneertown, Calif., a desert community near Joshua Tree National Park.

Rev. Dennis E. Thomas, former pastor of First African Baptist Church, dies at 62

The Rev. Dennis Earl Thomas has come to the end of his 41- year career as a church leader, preacher and musician. The former pastor of First African Baptist Church in Richmond died Friday, Dec. 7, 2018, in Philadelphia. He ...

Vernita Lee, mother of Oprah Winfrey, dies on Thanksgiving

Vernita Lee, the mother of Oprah Winfrey, has died at age 83. A spokeswoman for Ms. Winfrey issued a statement on Monday saying Ms. Lee died at her Milwaukee home on Thanksgiving Day, Nov. 22, 2018.

Richmond native and noted musician Melvin ‘Wah Wah Watson’ Ragin dies at 67

Melvin Marcellus Ragin learned to strum a guitar in Richmond and went on to become a legendary studio musician whose unique sound can be heard in more than 150 recordings that topped the charts at No. 1.

Wallace ‘Wally’ Triplett, football pioneer, dies at 92

Wallace “Wally” Triplett, who set many “firsts” as a pioneering African-American football player, died Thursday, Nov. 8, 2018, at his home in metropolitan Detroit. He was 92.

Erika E. Wheeler, musician and former outreach coordinator for the Richmond Symphony, dies at 63

Erika Eliza Wheeler combined a passion for music with a penchant for real estate.

Stan Lee, Marvel Comics writer and creator of the ‘Black Panther,’ dies at 95

Stan Lee, the creative dynamo who revolutionized the comic book and made billions for Hollywood by introducing human frailties in Marvel superheroes such as Spider-Man, the Fantastic Four and the Incredible Hulk, died Monday, Nov. 12, 2018.

Legendary baseball slugger Willie McCovey dies

Willie McCovey, who was among the most respected and feared sluggers in baseball history, died Wednesday, Oct. 31, 2018, at Stanford Hospital in Palo Alto, Calif. Mr. McCovey was 80.