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.
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


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ette Porter Moore-All Rights Reserved

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