Statements on Evelyn Lowery's death

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The King Center’s chief executive officer, Bernice A. King released the following statement:

“I am deeply saddened by the death of Mrs. Evelyn Gibson Lowery, and my heart goes out to her husband, Dr. Joseph E. Lowery and their three daughters, Yvonne Kennedy, Karen Lowery and Cheryl Lowery-Osborne. We are never prepared to say “goodbye” to a loved one.

“Evelyn Lowery was not only the beloved wife and active partner of one of America’s greatest civil rights leaders, but one of the most admired and respected veterans of the American Civil Rights Movement.  She was a dedicated and energetic leader in her own right. As founder and chair of SCLC/Women, Mrs. Lowery provided tireless leadership to empower women, protect and educate children and nurture families.  She further led the way to making a difference in the world by establishing the Drum Major for Justice Awards Dinner, the Evelyn G. Lowery Civil Rights Heritage Tour, and the Bridging the Gap –Girls to Women Mentoring Program.

“The King Center joins the civil rights community in mourning the loss of our dear sister, Mrs. Evelyn G. Lowery. But we celebrate her life as a good and faithful servant of God and humanity, whose indelible contributions will continue to inspire us as we carry forward the struggle into the future.”

Statement from Mayor Kasim Reed on the Passing of Evelyn Lowery:

“On behalf of the City of Atlanta, I extend my deepest sympathies to the family of Rev. Joseph Lowery. Today we remember Mrs. Evelyn Lowery, a remarkable woman in her own right, who dedicated her life to promoting equality, liberty and justice for all people. We are all a direct beneficiary of her sacrifice, service and work as a champion for human rights. Her legacy will continue to encourage many individuals, like me, to live with integrity, pride, courage and faith.”

“When I heard that Mrs. Evelyn Lowery had passed, I was actually chairing a Whip meeting for the Democratic Caucus in the U.S. Capitol.   I asked all the members to stop for a moment of silence in her honor.  Mrs. Lowery was a pillar of our community, a valuable participant in the struggle for civil rights, and an admired role model to the young people she mentored. 

Rep. John Lewis on passing of Evelyn Lowery:

"She was supported her husband in all his work, but she was a leader in her own right, born into the struggle through the activism of her parents in Memphis, Tennessee.

A few years ago, she organized a campaign, called the Drum Major for Justice Award, which commemorates some of the participants in the Civil Rights Movement by placing markers that help to tell their stories.   Among the awardees were the Rev. James Orange, the Rev. Hosea Williams, Viola Liuzzo and other non-violent soldiers who sacrificed a great deal for the cause of civil rights and social justice.  Her steadfast devotion to her husband was admirable, and her unwavering commitment to the issues of social justice will be hard to replace.  Mrs. Lowery will be deeply missed.”

Rep. Hank Johnson on Evelyn Lowery, the wife of civil rights leader Joseph E. Lowery:

 “Mrs. Lowery was a devoted mother, wife and friend who exemplified the strength of purpose that has marked the life that she and Dr. Lowery built and shared throughout their more than 65 years of marriage. Her life’s work fighting AIDS, preserving history, protecting the health and welfare of our communities and her tireless efforts strengthening black families is her legacy. America has lost a great patriot for truth and justice. Our sincere and heartfelt condolences and prayers go out to Dr. Lowery, their children, and the family.”