We Remember Iconic African Americans of 2011

Gilbert "Gil" Scott Heron passed on May 27th of this year. He is one of the most profound poets and musicians of our time, who helped build the soundtrack of the civil rights and black power movement of the 70s. He's best known for his poetic song "The Revolution Will Not be Televised."

Every year, we lose members of the African American family that have been instrumental and encouraging to our lives.  Those that have used their talents to increase our lives are worthy of remembrance and this year the list is filled with dynamic individuals of note.

Vesta Williams and Heavy D were huge shocks to everyone and both had mysterious deaths. Their music is an integral part of our life’s playlist. Joe Frazier will always remembered as the man who handed Muhammad Ali his first defeat. Nathaniel D. Hale, more popularly known as “Nate Dogg”, was instrumental to rap, but also used his life to help young men and women through a christian mentoring program.

Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth died at age 89.  He was a right-hand man of Martin Luther King, Jr., that always reminded us to fight the good fight against racial injustice. The Grio.com has memorialized these astounding individuals and many more in a photographic slide show.  Let us give them a moment of silence out of reverence and respect for what they have offered us all.  Thank you.

-J.C. Brooks

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