Memphis prepares to say farewell to Civil Rights icon

Bailey to lie in state at Civil Rights Museum Friday; funeral set for Saturday at noon.

Wiley Henry | 7/14/2015, 4:58 p.m.
Bailey to lie in state at Civil Rights Museum Friday; funeral set for Saturday at noon.
D'Army Bailey.

Wiley Henry

Wiley Henry

Final services for National Civil Rights Museum founder D’Army Bailey are set for this weekend.

Bailey, circuit court judge, civil rights activist, attorney, author and actor, passed away Sunday, July 12 after a long battle with cancer.

His body will lie in state at the National Civil Rights Museum on Friday from noon to 6 p.m. Visitation will be Saturday, from 10 a.m. to noon, at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church, followed by the funeral. He will be buried at Memorial Park Cemetery.

Bailey lived much of his life on the battlefield trying to right what he believed was wrong in society. Skillful at negotiations, he used the bully pulpit and his ingenuity to make a difference.

That was Mr. Bailey’s public persona. His words and deeds also impacted his personal life. The two were inextricably linked, said Justin Bailey, Mr. Bailey’s son.

“He was a good man,” he said. “He was only here for 73 years, but he packed a lot in those 73 years.”

Javier Bailey said his relationship with his uncle was a little different than his siblings and cousins. “He stressed to me community activism,” said Javier Bailey. “He said, ‘It is a moral imperative that somebody keep up the fight.’”

Mr. Bailey continued to fight until his death on Sunday, July 12. He leaves behind a body of work, including the National Civil Rights Museum, which he founded.

A scholarship fund is set up in memory of Mr. D’Army Bailey at Clark Atlanta University, 950 Main St., Worchester, Mass. 01601. Jonathan Kappel is the director of campaign advancement.

If you go:

  • The body of Mr. Bailey will lie in state Friday from noon to 6 p.m. at the National Civil Rights Museum, 450 Mulberry St.
  • The visitation is Saturday, from 10 a.m. to noon, at Mississippi Boulevard Christian Church, 70 N. Bellevue Blvd., followed by the funeral.
  • Interment will be at Memorial Park Cemetery, 5668 Poplar Ave.
  • N.J. Ford and Sons Funeral Home, 12 S. Parkway W., has charge.