GALVESTON, Texas — Melvin Williams, formerly of Parsons and son of the late Naomi Long, passed away on Monday, Aug. 19, 2019, in Galveston, Texas.
Melvin was born June 17, 1944.
Melvin attended Douglass School then integrated into a white school, attending West Junior High. He graduated in 1962 from Parsons High School. He attended what is now Pittsburg State University. After four semesters, he and his buddy, Norman Baxley, hitchhiked to join the Peace Corps in 1967. They spent two years in Venezuela. Melvin later earned a master’s degree in sociology and worked as a EEOC officer in Parsons. He also worked at SEK-CAP in Girard.
Melvin and his family moved to Mission, Kansas, where he became the first director of K.U.M.C. Affirmative Action Office, a position he held for 20 years.
Melvin accepted a position in Texas at the University of Texas medical branch in Galveston in January 1997.
Melvin was named Kansas City’s 50 Most Influential Black Americans in 1983. He held many positions while living in Johnson County. He was active in many organizations, including the NAACP, that helped others achieve their goals and equal rights.
He has had a good life and was one of many KU Jayhawks basketball fans. He will be sorely missed by many here in Parsons, Kansas City and Galveston.
Melvin leaves behind a wife, Beate; three children, Amy, Micah and Jonah; three grandchildren, Alexis, Brandon and Kya; a great-grandchild, Chayton; a brother, Chades; and two sisters, Melba and Lea.
Rest in peace my dear brother. We will always love and miss you.
A memorial service is planned for 2 p.m. Sunday at Hamilton Chapel United Methodist Church, 1527 Morton.
A memorial service in Texas will be at 11 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 3, at First Presbyterian Church, 1093 Church St., Galveston.