the first generation fruits of the Black power era. He was a product of the
open enrollment struggle on the CUNY campuses in the late 1960s. He was a
participating member of the Black Student Union formed at Queens College in
1970 as a result of the success of that struggle. He grew up in those Queens
neighborhoods that produced many of the Panther cadres in New York. These
formative experiences set him upon his life's work as a cadre of the Black
Lloyd was a veteran activist in the Black Liberation Movement. For over
thirty five years, he was part of the leadership cadre of a number of
organizations which defined that Movement as it exists in Harlem, in New York
City, and in the nation at large. For the past two years Churne gave many
hours to the creation of a Black Liberation think tank, which now exists as
the New York Resea rch and Information Collective. He did this while
continuing to provide leadership to the struggle to free our political
prisoners. This was both a political and personal priority he shouldered as
the uncle of one of most celebrated freedom fighters Dr. Mutulu Shakur and
one of the central cadres of support organization the Family and Friend of
Dr.Mutulu Shakur. : an organization devoted not only to supporting those on
the inside but keeping their ideas and organizations vibrant for new
generations of Black folks.
a Pan African Internationalist. He was an integral part of the anti-Apartheid
struggle of the 1970-80s participating in the mobilization to support the
Soweto Uprisings of 1977, Blacks in Support of Southern African Liberation.
He was a founding member of the Metropolitan Organizing Committee of the
Black Radical Congress and devoted long hours to its agenda and programs
until leaving the organization in 2003.
one of the founding cadres of the Black New York Action Committee. For over
15 years Churne built that organization to be a radical presence in Harlem.
He was at the center of the organizations tenant organization efforts, first
in the late 1970s on 123rd St. and later on 114th street and for the bulk of
the 1980s with BN YACs Fannie Lou Hamer Institute located at 1878 7th. Ave.
He held housing workshops for tenants at the institute and visited a number
of buildings as part of the organization's effort to create an association of
tenant organizations south of 116th street in Harlem. Tenants of 1845-51 7th
Ave remember how hard and steadfast Churne worked to help the tenants gain
control and ownership of those buildings from absentee slumlords and build
their tenant association. More recently, Churne served a stint on the Board
of the Harlem Tenants Council.
helped actualize BNYACs educational programs. In the late 1970s he worked
tirelessly to support St. Thomas Community School, and independent Black
institution. In the 1980s he worked to help build the Fannie Lou Hamer
Institute's tutorial programs and it's Saturday School. He facilitated
community based political education by helping to design the "Reels in
Focus" film and discussion series for the Institute. He helped the
organization launch the Black Music Comin' Home Series in the late 1970s which
combined film, political oratory, poetry and jazz in a club-style atmosphere
and helped launch a jazz renaissance in Harlem.
Churne s professional career was in the health related professions but one of
his most notable contributions to our struggle was as part of the Coalition
to Save Sydenham Hospital, where Churne manned the BNYAC Office and the
barricades in that desperate struggle to save critical healthcare in Harlem.
He also was at the center of one of the largest mobilization ever seen in
Harlem, the candlelight march and vigil for the victims of the Atlanta Child
Murders. His anti-police brutality work included participating in the
organizing cadres and street demonstrations of the Henry Woodley Justice
Committee and the Ashanti Bartlett Justice Committee for these two slain
an anti-war activist. He wrote and designed leaflets and pamphlets opposing
imperialist wars in southern Africa, Grenada, Panama, the Persian Gulf and
Iraq. He delivered those materials door to door and street corner to street
corner for over 35 years.
not miss meetings nor did he come unprepared. His notes were impeccable and
thorough. He was the penultimate facilitator. Churne was even handed and
fair-minded without a hint of mean-spiritedness. He could execute all of the
necessary tasked demanded of a cadre in understaffed organizations: take
notes, keep books, man the security detail at rallies, put down the chairs,
put up the chairs. His ego needs never got in the way of the needs of the
organization He did not need to be the leader but so often by example he was.
Let us not
forget that Churne Lloyd was a family man. Therefore let us not honor the man
and forget the needs of his family. The nurturing and protection of his wife,
Maryhana, his son, Kamau, his daughters, Efe and One, and his siblings,
are now our responsibility.
us too soon. In that he reminds us of others we needed with us a good while
longer; Safiya Henderson Holmes, Sekou Sundiata, Safiya Bukhari, Bill Epton,
John Guerrant, Olive Armstrong, Brother Modibo, Preston Wilcox and the beat
goes on. I will miss Churne but I will never forget him. He was my true
friend for over thirty years We will miss Churne only if we forget him for he
is now an ancestor but the memory of his example will remain a motive force
in our people's struggle for liberation.
Brother Churne Lloyd... Presente!
s. e. anderson is author of "The Black Holocaust for Beginners"
Social Activism is not a hobby: it's a Lifestyle lasting a Lifetime