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Fort Wayne ‘prime mover’ Charles Redd dies

FORT WAYNE – Charles B. Redd, a community activist, civil rights leader and former City Councilman whose life and work had a profound effect on Fort Wayne, died Sunday night, friends and family said.

He was 82.

“He was just one of life’s best people on this earth,” said Win Moses. “He was a motivator, a prime mover in everything he was involved in.”

And the list of things he was involved in was long: He was instrumental in desegregating Fort Wayne schools, was a founder of the Voter Information Center, was chairman of the Indiana Democratic African-American Caucus, was a board member for Anthony Wayne Services, the Headwaters Park Alliance and the Fort Wayne Housing Authority, and helped create Headwaters Park. The Indiana Democratic Party’s list of goals for minority inclusion was named the Charles Redd Honorary Fair Share Declaration.

An Indiana House Resolution passed in 2001 said he had “spent his entire life in service to mankind.” Redd not only protested school segregation, but helped organize “freedom schools” for children involved in school boycotts. After working for the former General Telephone Co., Redd was a Democratic City Council member from 1983 to 1991.

Arrangements are pending, but are expected to include a calling from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday at Ellis Funeral Home, 1021 E. Lewis St., and the funeral at noon Saturday at Turner Chapel AME Church, 836 E. Jefferson Blvd., with calling from 10 a.m. to noon before the service.

For more on this story see Tuesday’s print edition of The Journal Gazette or return to after 3 a.m. Tuesday.

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