Sundays Obituary: John Allen Buggs

I loved this man dearly. John Allen Buggs was one of my favorite cousin’s father. He made the best pot of blue crabs when I visited Maryland at 15 years old in August of 1983. I remember him being one of the kindest and most intelligent men I have ever known. John had a great sense of humor.

I attended Cousin John’s funeral in Los Angeles.  The late Mayor Tom Bradley, a family friend spoke at John’s Funeral.

John Allen Buggs; Led U.S. Commission on Civil Rights

Los Angeles Times
March 11, 1995
John Allen Buggs, former director of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights who was a leading advocate for the black community after the 1965 Watts riots and then an adviser to three Presidents, has died.
A daughter, Zara Gale Taylor, said her father was 79 and died Tuesday at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center after a long struggle with Alzheimer’s disease.
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Buggs began his 53-year career in community relations in Florida and moved in the early 1950s to Los Angeles, where he rose to national prominence as a peacemaker in the aftermath of the Watts riots.
He served under Presidents Richard M. Nixon, Gerald R. Ford and Jimmy Carter as executive director of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and as staff director of the Model Cities Administration at the Department of Housing and Urban Development.
He came to the federal commission in 1971 after serving on the Los Angeles County Human Relations Commission from 1954 to 1967. Buggs retired in 1978 after a stroke.
Born in Brunswick, Ga., Buggs was the son of southern Georgia’s first black physician, Dr. Charles Wesley Buggs, the family said.
He served as executive director of the NAACP in Marion County, Fla., and was co-chairman of the Florida State Committee on School Integration before moving with his family to California.
In addition to his daughter, Buggs is survived by his wife of 52 years, Mary Gale (Polly) Buggs, another daughter, Diane D. Dix, and two grandsons.
Funeral services are scheduled for Monday at 1 p.m. at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church at 2800 Stanford Ave., Los Angeles. The family has suggested memorial donations to Dillard University, Buggs’ alma mater in New Orleans, where a scholarship fund is being set up.
(l to r) Diane, Zara Cully Brown, Zara Gale,
John Allen & Mary Gale
Cousin John & me in 1978

Copyright

The material, both written and photographic on these pages is the copyright of Yvette Porter Moore unless stated. Material on this site may be used for personal reference only. If you wish to use any of the material on this site for other means, please seek the written permission of Yvette Porter Moore
© 2010-2011

ette Porter Moore-All Rights Reserved

Sundays Obituary: Rev. Leroy Porter

Leroy Porter was my father’s half brother (Walter J. Porter). Leroy was the youngest son of his father (Harrison’s) first wife (Pearlie). Leroy’s mother died when he was very young, and his father Harrison married my dad’s mother Helen Bunn. They were together only five years, in Lake Providence, East Carroll, Louisiana, as my grandmother ran away from the farm life with my dad in tow.  My Grandmother wanted my dad to get an education and not be a sharecropper as most of Harrison’s children had been tilling the ground.






I had not met any Porter’s, until about three years ago. Sure, I heard about a few of my father’s older siblings, but did not have any in person introductions (at least not that I can remember).


I found Leroy’s daughter Gaynell, who had never been married or had any children. In our phone conversation, I told her I had someone take a picture of her father’s headstone and put on findagrave.  I asked her if her mother was still living as her name was on the headstone also but with no ending date.  Gaynell informed me that she had died 8 years ago, but was not able to have her buried in the plot they had purchased, because the State had shut the cemetery down for an investigation.  She was very distraught and upset from this conversation, so I told her that I would help her to get her mom buried next to her father.


We met last year in Los Angeles, CA and the reunion according to my estimation was considered a family research trip, as the purpose of my trip was to take her mother’s ashes to the cemetery where Leroy Porter was buried, and find other names of family buried at the cemetery.  Gaynell had her mother’s ashes in her closet and told me she could not rest until she has her mother in her resting place.

Photo of Headstone

 I was prepared when I visited Gaynell…After negotiations with the necessary authorities, I was able to have it approved for Martha Jones Porter’s remains to be buried next to her husband.  My next task is to get the headstone etched with Martha’s ending date.


When I took Gaynell to the cemetery she had a sense of relief.  She was not in the best of health, but she was at peace.  She gave me a hug and said it was a God sent that I had found her and that this burden was lifted.

Copyright
The material, both written and photographic on these pages is the copyright of Yvette Porter Moore unless stated. Material on this site may be used for personal reference only. If you wish to use any of the material on this site for other means, please seek the written permission of Yvette Porter Moore
© 2010-2011