More than 300 People Attend Memorial for Paducah Civil Rights Leader
More than three hundred family, friends and community members gathered last night to remember the life of the Rev. Dr. W.G. Harvey at the church he founded, New Greater Love Missionary Baptist Church in Paducah.
Rev. Harvey came to Paducah more than fifty-years-ago and was a leader in the city’s civil rights movement. Harvey became the first black city commissioner and mayor pro-tem. Through the seventies and eighties Harvey transformed lives through his church he added according to his Grandson the Rev. Jonathan McReynolds.
“And, there’s been so many people over the last week that have reached out and said how my grandfather, Rev. Harvey, helped them so much in various areas of life to become better human beings, to become social leaders in the community even engage in politics and things of that nature,” McReynolds said. “So, he leaves a rich legacy behind.”
Among the crowd was Harvey’s longtime friend John Foreman. fought for all people no matter of race or social-economical status to have a better life and like to have young people around him to teach them to be leaders in the community.
“I’ve known him since nineteen sixty-two, said Foreman. “We will never forget the many things that man had did.”
Mayor Gayle Kaler told the attendees he worked for racial equality and made Paducah a better place to live for all. “His life was an example of courage, strength and vision,” she said.
The Rev. Harvey fought for the rights of city workers, took on the Ku Klux Klan and marched with the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King. The City of Paducah ordered flags at half-mast in honor of him. Harvey will be buried this morning.