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News 2014 June

Stories for June 2014

Thursday, June 26

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Top Stories This Week

Top stories affecting South Florida's Black communities

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The Clarks 64 years and counting

Family and friends will celebrate July 4

Mattie Jordan, 81, the lovely daughter of Gertrude P. and Robert Jordan, was only 17 years-old, when she fell in love with the tall, dark and handsome, 25 years-old Jimmie, the son of Minnie and Isaac Clark. They fell in love at a church they both attended in Vienna, Dooley County, GA.

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Newest addition to CBS4 more than an anchor

This isn’t Kansas (City) anymore and Irika Sargent knows it. Back in May, Sargent happily joined CBS4 Miami as their newest anchor. She is hoping to transition with ease as she has an extensive background to guide her.

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Chatter That Matters

Icon Wilfred James (George) McKenzie, 89, retired surgical tech at the Miami Veteran’s Administrative Hospital, died June 3. His memorial service was held last Thursday at Range Funeral Home where his daughter, Lynette McKenzie, greeted those in attendance, such as friends, and neighbors. Those in attendance were: Martha Day, Nancy Dawkins, Fr. Garret, Church of the Incarnation, Dr. Fred and wife, Juanita, Dr. Enid C. Pinkney and husband, Frank, Dr. Edwin T. Demerrite, Charlange Thompkins, and Kenshawn, and more.

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Lifestyle Happenings

The Scandalous Divas presents: The one year anniversary of Scandalous Sundays 7 p.m. Sun. June 29 at the Miramar Cultural Center. Call 954-400-8948. North Shore Medical Center presents a lecture on emergency preparedness June 25 at 5:30 p.m. Call 1-800-984-3434. Miami Jackson’s Class of 1979 is celebrating their 35th class reunion in June. Call 305-610-9868.

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Man stalks, vandalizes Miami Times office

It started around 2:30 p.m. Amid the raucous environment of a busy newspaper came a loud crash, followed by screams. A middle-aged man wearing a white T-shirt was seen fleeing the front entrance of The Miami Times. Employees at the paper saw him throw a large red brick through the Times’ front window sending a shower of broken glass flying through the office. Police were called and a report was filed.

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Miami Gardens sues big banks for predatory mortgage loans

Bank of America, JP Morgan, Wells Fargo and Citigroup accused of violating the Fair Housing Act

Miami Gardens is suing four of America’s biggest banks, alleging they engaged in a pattern and practice of issuing predatory mortgage loans to minority residents that resulted in foreclosures in violation of the federal Fair Housing Act. The city filed four separate lawsuits June 13 accusing JP Morgan, Bank of America, Citigroup and Wells Fargo unlawfully imposed different terms or conditions to minority students on a continuous basis since at least 2004.

TACOLCY’S CEO cancels meeting

Residents and activists planned to address mismanagement allegations

TACOLCY CEO Taj Brown and board members cancelled a meeting Friday with concerned community residents are seeking answers to allegations of financial mismanagement at the Liberty City institution. The meeting, which was scheduled at 9 a.m. at TACOLCY, was actually intended to form a Community Advisory Council, where residents would meet with leaders four times a year to offer input on issues and concerns to the CEO and TACOLCY board members.

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Faith Calendar

New Christ Tabernacle MBC invites you to its annual prayer breakfast 8:30 a.m. Sat. June 28 at the Piccadilly’s restaurant in Hialeah. Call 305-621-8126. New Christ Tabernacle MBC will host the Calvary Travelers Legents of Miami celebration June 29 at 3:30. Call 305-621-8126.

Frederica S. Wilson launches campaign for return of girls

Congresswoman Frederica S. Wilson (FL-24) is urging the U.S. and the international community to create a twitter storm, of millions of followers, in support of the kidnapped Nigerian school girls, their rescue and the arrest of terrorist group Boko Haram.  The extremist group abducted more than two hundred girls in April. Congresswoman Wilson called for the international twitter campaign today at a press conference held with Congresswoman Shelia Jackson Lee (TX-18), Congresswoman Lois Frankel (FL-22),

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Save the Belafonte TACOLCY Center

The Belafonte TACOLCY Center is a Liberty City institution that has nourished thousands of youth academically and athletically through its diverse programs. Miami’s Black community have benefitted from the center’s numerous health clinics, voter registration drives and community forums. TACOLCY also enrolled hundreds if not thousands in President Barack Obama’s Affordable Healthcare Plan.

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FCAA announces 2014 scholarship recipients

Three South FL students awarded for community and classroom excellence

The Family Christian Association of America, Inc. (FCAA) is pleased to announce that their 2014 Scholarships have been awarded to Elizabeth Clervil, Da’Marco Milton and Chrislyne Floreal. These scholarships are awarded to those students demonstrating excellence in the classroom and in the community. FCAA is committed to encouraging youth to pursue their dreams through higher education.

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Sports Brothers

Let's hope Lebron James stays

Pat Riley came off like a G in his state of the Heat press conference last week. Most observers were impressed by Riley’s no nonsense approach to his team and his direct challenge to his superstars. Riley went right at Lebron James, who has another big decision

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Pastors' directive: Move forward, don't look back

Scripture teaches us to follow God's word with faith

The His Extended Hands Ministries was conceived in the heart of Pastor Desmond and co-pastor Edna Rivers in the early part of 1995.  After struggling with that idea for about a year, Desmond informed their former pastor, Rev. Carl Johnson, the spiritual leader of The Community 93rd Street Baptist Church, of what God had placed in his heart. Johnson encouraged him ‘to follow the Lord.’ 

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News Briefs

Ojus educator dies before his final year Alumni and colleagues gathered at Ojus Elementary School in Northeast Miami-Dade Sunday to say goodbye to beloved Coach Gregory Blatch, a FAMU graduate who taught P.E. for more than three decades. Blatch died last Thursday at age 61 from a heart attack just before his retirement next year at the school, located at 18600 W. Dixie Hwy near Aventura Mall. A petition is being

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Mass shooting in Liberty City leaves two dead

Gunmen kill two, injure seven

Residents said bodies were everywhere. When it was all over, two people were dead and seven were injured in one of the worst mass shootings in Liberty City’s history. On the ground dead was Kevin Richard, 30. Another casualty, Nakiel Jackson, died later from his injuries. A 17-year-old girl was in critical condition at Jackson Memorial Hospital. The names of the other victims were not yet released by The Miami Times’ deadline.

Monday, June 23

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Financial woes plague TACOLCY

CEO Taj Brown says agency ‘ain’t going nowhere’

Concerns are growing over the future of the Belafonte TACOLCY Center as allegations concerning mounting debts, staff terminations and financial instability threaten to end the Liberty City agency that has stood for nearly half of a century.

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Lifestyle Happenings

Pillars of Strength No. 2 Masonic Lodge will host its 4th annual Father’s Day party boat fishing trip on June 14. Call 305-254-6610. The South Florida Alumni Chapter of North Carolina Central University will host Region III Conference and 8th Annual Golf Tournament, June 12-14 in Coral Springs, FL. Visit www.nccusouthflorida.org or nccuaasfc@bellsouth.net

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Chatter That Matters

Henry Mingo, a retired Omega Psi Phi Brother, stood on the platform last week to announce his niece wrote to him and informed him of her acceptance to all universities that she applied to such as Yale University, Brown, Princeton, John Hopkins, Washington, U. Of Virginia, Wesleyan, Spellman and Rutgers. She announced receiving acceptance from all of them, plus a full scholarship based on her high GPA. Uncle Mingo would like her to select Yale U and also follow in the steps of Barack Obama and become president of the United States. You will be posted as she challenges these obstacles.

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Young pastors serving God in word, songs and deeds

The Westons want “to seek, find, and help save the lost”

Michael S. Weston was born to Doris Rahming and Booker T. Weston in Deerfield Beach, Florida. He was raised and educated there, and is a graduate of Zion Lutheran Senior High School. Weston matriculated at Florida Memorial University in Miami for two years, but is a graduate of Harvest Reapers International School of Ministries (HRIS) at 600 S.W. 27th Ave. in Ft. Lauderdale. There are three HRIS. He is a Licensed Life Coach and Christian (Family) Counselor.

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Faith Center opens apartment complex

Building in the heart of Liberty City will provide low-income housing to veterans, those with special needs

The three-story apartment building at 6020 NW 13th Ave. in Liberty City has been transformed from a rundown eyesore to a beautiful desert sand, terra-cotta colored complex. The courtyard has been paved and painted black, six patio tables with large umbrellas are strategically placed in the courtyard and in the center on the pavement, there is a large circle bordered with white that has in its the center the words “Jesus Christ.”

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The “comeback couple”

New restaurant turns southern-comfort food up a notch

Someone call LL Cool J and let him know that this is a “comeback!” The married couple, Roshonda, 38, and Tony Smith Jr., 39, have returned back to where their love story began to follow their culinary dreams. Family First Bistro and Catering, located at 2560 Service Rd., brings you southern comfort foods with a gourmet flair. What used to be known as Frosty’s is a quaint restaurant furnished with a bar and patio area that’s spacious enough to house more than 150 to 200 people.

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100 Black Men hold annual conference

He was introduced to the 100 Black Men of America at the age of 12-year-old Dario Stephen tells a local newspaper that without he would be, “selling drugs, somewhere in jail or six feet below.” A Liberty City native, Stephens was glad to be a part of the unveiling of the 100 Black Men of America community empowerment project that took place outside of Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale.

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Footprints across Haiti

Group holds shoe drive to aid earthquake recovery

In 2010 images of Haiti projected the plight of the small island nation into the hearts of many after a 7.0 magnitude earthquake shook the country’s already weak foundation to bits. Fast forward several years to today and conversations about the state of Haiti that would place its recovery as a top global priority are scarce.

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Community leaders, residents march against crime through Liberty City

Father’s Day meant a trip to South Miami-Dade’s Graceland cemetery for Sean Sams. That’s where his son, Marquis is buried. Marquis Sams, 20, was killed in Little Haiti in April when a driver pulled up and opened fire on him and Wilneka Pennyman,19, before fleeing the scene.

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Fighting crime or invasion of privacy?

Cameras, monitoring systems coming to Black communities

In the next few months Miami police expect to have technology in place to zoom in, identify, follow and watch residents in Overtown, Little Haiti and Liberty City. The city police department is moving forward with a complicated plan to allow them to watch up to 200 closed-circuit television screens at once in a new high-tech command center. There will be 25 high-definition, 55-inch television sets fed by up to 400 cameras placed around town.

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Miami-Dade cops on trial for killing two Black males

A major trial is underway involving two Miami-Dade police officers who were stripped of immunity last week in the controversial shooting that killed two Black men in Little Haiti nearly seven years ago. Drama is building as a jurors hear the details of the racially-charged case involving police officers Ryan Robinson and Michael Mendez, who killed Michael Knight and Frisco Blackwood in a barrage of bullets after they turned onto a dead-end street in 2007.

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A trailblazer says goodbye

Sandy Sears retires after decades at Jackson Hospital

After 39 years, Sandy Sears is finally being released from Jackson Memorial hospital. She is checking out and is listed in excellent condition. Sears will leave the busy halls of Miami-Dade’s largest public hospital when she retires in two weeks as senior vice president at Jackson North Medical System, a 382-bed community hospital that’s part of the Jackson Health System’s $1.5 billion-a-year network.

Friday, June 20

Financial woes plague TACOLCY

The future of a TACOLCY is uncertain as financial woes plague the Liberty City Institution

Thursday, June 19

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Top Stories This Week

Top stories affecting South Florida's Black communities.

Friday, June 13

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Heat fall to Spurs, fans drop like flies

Can the Heat make a comeback in the NBA Finals after the Spurs took the victory in Game 4?

Thursday, June 12

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Top Stories This Week

Top stories affecting South Florida's Black communities.

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Black entrepreneur fills some pretty big shoes

Most ladies can recall a moment in their lives where they were tempted to do the unthinkable — ditching the pretty yet painful heels and just walking to or from their next destination shoeless.

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End of an era for Miami Edison Middle

One of the most historic educational institutions in Miami’s Black community will become a thing of the past when Miami Edison Middle School opens its doors in the fall under a different name and curriculum. The middle school will become iTech @ Thomas A. Edison Educational Center, a magnet high school that will specialize in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

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Goodbye Miami Edison Middle School

The transformation of Edison Middle School into a technical school in the fall will be the start of an initiative to help students in low-income areas excel in science, mathematics and technology. After years of struggling with mediocre and low grades on the state’s accountability tests, educators hope iTech Thomas A. Edison School’s curriculum will usher in a new era of academic achievement.

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Pastor Willie and Lucille Smith married 54 years

The Smiths believe: Children must be trained to love and serve the Lord

The Smiths believe that “a full quiver of children is a blessing from God.” They filled their home with eight. They are the “God-fearing” parents of eight — two boys and six girls — four are ministers: Pastor Gale Smith Wilcox, Apostle Willie, Jr., Palatka, FL, David, co-pastor and Minister Linda are both serving at Mt. Olive Fire Baptized Holiness Church with their father at 8400 N.W. 22nd Ave.

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Harvest Reapers Int’l school hosts open house

Before 12 p.m. on Saturday, June 7, prospective students of Harvest Reapers International School’s newest location at 2387 N.W. 54th St., were busy filling out application forms, as others hurried to be in the building at the scheduled starting time of 12 p.m.

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Miss. Bee-Ette, Mr. Senord crowned at annual banquet

Eta Phi Beta Sorority, Incorporated, Alpha Gamma Chapter and SHAD Club Number 25 presented its 36th Annual Bee-Ettes and Senords Presentation and Banquet. The affair was held at The Hamilton Inn and Suites, Miramar. The Bee-Ettes presented were Ari G. Adkins, Tyra Janae Gilchrist, Raven Jacques, Mykima McKenzie, Anayise Rosario and Senord Zion Moss.

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Apartments in Miami Gardens, Opa-locka sued

Owner accused of discriminating against the disabled

They spent millions of dollars on clubhouses, swimming pools and upgrades to apartment units and parking lots. But when asked to install safety grab bars in Pamela Carter’s bathroom, managers at her Opa-locka apartment allegedly stalled on the request before Carter finally suffered a fall that left her hospitalized for two weeks with serious injuries.

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News Briefs

Students’ final act in the FCAT saw a small increase in performance on the standardized test. In Miami-Dade County, there was improvement in five of seven areas including math, reading and science. Educators hope the upward results will bring future success as the state continues to transition to the national curriculum standards called Common Core.

Gov. Scott signs record $77B budget for new school year

Gov. Rick Scott signed the largest budget in Florida history, approving $77 billion Monday that would boost spending on schools and the environment while sparing hundreds of millions in local projects from his veto pen.

North Miami appoints new police chief

Leonard Burgess has been appointed as police chief of North Miami, ending a five-month search that included stiff competition within the city’s police force.

Raymond Boone Sr., newspaper publisher, honored at his funeral

Community leaders and colleagues remembered Richmond (VA) Free Press editor and publisher Raymond H. Boone Sr. at his funeral on Tuesday at New Deliverance Evangelistic Church in North Chesterfield, Va. Boone, the colorful, principled and feisty founder of the Black weekly paper, died Tuesday, June 3 at his Richmond home after battling pancreatic cancer, his wife, Jean Boone said. He was 76.

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The final chapter

JET magazine releases its final print issue

After 63 years of gracing the coffee tables of American homes and barber shops, the iconic JET magazine bid farewell to millions of Black readers with its last issue that hit the stands last Monday.

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Opa-locka annexation rejected

City would have gained millions of tax dollars

Miami-Dade’s Planning and Advisory Board last week rejected Opa-locka’s plan to annex an area that includes Miami-Dade College’s North Campus, after hearing intense opposition to the plan during a heated community meeting. The decisio

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'Colors of the Caribbean' offers island flavor, education

Free event in Hollywood on Saturday

The taste of the Caribbean Islands will come to South Florida this weekend with the third annual Colors of the Caribbean Festival, a free event hosted by the Caribbean American Heritage Foundation Inc. (CAHFI). The event, which will be held this Saturday at Young Circle Park in Hollywood, is in observance of national Caribbean-American Heritage month.

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Integrity needed at North Miami City Hall

When she ran for mayor of North Miami in the city’s election last year, Lucille Tondreau’s campaign slogan was “I Love Lucie”. It was a catchy phrase that caught on to voters who elected her as the city’s first Haitian-American female mayor. It’s too bad her term was rocked by scandal last month after she was suspended from office for allegedly running an $8 million mortgage scheme.

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Coming to a funeral home near you: Dancing pallbearers

Amid sobs and tears, they march and even dance before they carry the casket of the deceased to their final resting place. As part of the service, they would break out in snazzy, choreographed dance routines to help lighten the mood among mourners. They are professional pallbearers, stylish men who help give a grand sendoff to loved ones during funerals. It's a growing trend in the funeral industry as consumers seek more creative and less traditional ways to celebrate their relative‘s life and legacy.

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Chatter That Matters

The wedding ceremony for Antonio A. Holley and Delores Green was held at Newport Beach Side Hotel & Resort, Sunday, May 25 on a makeshift arc decorated with sea items on the sand of Sunny Isles, while Jeffrey Townsley serenaded the crowd on his saxophone as the bridal party carefully eluded the sand as they walked from the hotel to the selected area.

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Speech, language disorders are preventable, treatable

The best news is that there is, for the first time in seemingly forever, no chance of rain today through Tuesday, with only a slight chance on Wednesday or Thursday.

Wednesday, June 11

Saving Sergeant Kirksey

A heartfelt story of a soldier

Top Stories This Week

Top stories affecting South Florida's Black communities this week.

Thursday, June 5

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Al Sharpton delivers pep talk to Northwestern's high school seniors

The now graduates

Civil rights leader Al Sharpton visited Miami Northwestern Senior High School Monday and delivered a stirring message to encourage high school graduates to pursue big dreams as they embark on new phases of their lives.

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Camillus House celebrates role of educators in transmitting Black cultures

In an annual celebration, this year Camillus House recognized the role and contribution of black educators

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Top Stories This Week

Top stories affecting South Florida's Black communities this week.

Aretha Franklin headlines TV One for Black Music Month

In recognition of Black Music Month, TV One will roll out a special programming slate of new specials, original factual series, original reality series, movies and performance specials this June. The programming will be anchored by the premiere of the biographical special Aretha: Frankly Speaking and HelloBeautiful Interludes Live: Trey Songz on Saturday, June 21. Additionally, other new episodes of HelloBeautiful Interludes Live will air

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Joseph Kelley hosts mock trial for elementary students

Vice Mayor, Joseph L. Kelley recently hosted a mock trial, sponsored by the City of Opa-locka Mayor and Commission, for children from Robert B. Ingram and Nathan B. Young Elementary schools. The event was designed to help the students understand the functions of government, specifically at the local level.

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$14K put into magnet program art project

Northwestern High School students work on mural and gallery

A mural goes unnoticed, tucked away on a short, empty hallway at Miami Northwestern Senior High School. It's colorful and inspired but it was created on walls near the art classrooms and isn't seen by many. Students may not even know that on that hallway an art gallery exists, but for one art student the seclusion is perfect. “This is a quiet place I can express myself and not be judged. It gave me a place to call home - a sanctuary,” said Garfield Joseph, a junior and manager of the new art gallery on which students are working hard.

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Now we know why Maya Angelou sings

Amidst the physical prowess of today’s star athletes and glamour of Black entertainers, Maya Angelou was a unique celebrity who lived in the limelight as America’s poet laureate. From presidential inaugurations to commencement addresses, Angelou graced this nation with her intellectual prose and insight on the human condition. As America plans to return this humanitarian back to her ancestors, one wonders, who will be the next poet laureate to inspire others to think beyond themselves and the physical.

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She’s Beauty owners raise $5K for charity

She's Beauty one year anniversary was a success. Founders Elizabeth Hinds and Ann Hinds of this charitable company is alway finding ways to contribute to their community. On their anniversary there was no exception to their giving spirit.

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Chatter That Matters

Congratulations are in order for John McMann, director of the Miami Central Marching Rockets for providing the community with its Annual Band Concert, last Tuesday, in the school’s auditorium before a capacity crowd of students, staff and parents. McMann took to the mic and informed the people waiting for the beginning to watch the first dance will be “The Pledge of Allegiance” through hip-hop music with dancers from Miami

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Heat 3-peat won't be easy

A whole lot of basketball fans must be asking themselves, “What did we do to deserve this?”  One year after an epic Spurs-Heat matchup in the NBA Finals, here we are again. As rapper Jay Z would say “Can I get an encore, do you want more?” Yes we do to be perfectly honest. For the first time since 1998, the NBA Finals will be a rematch.

Entrepreneur ‘Activating Communities Through Service’

Gary Smith, Jr. creates Leading A.C.T.S. to inform fellow students

“Did you hear about the rose that grew from a crack in the concrete?,” the late, hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur wrote. Founder of a new and unique virtual start-up business, Gary Smith, Jr. says he is pushing for all of his peers to be that rose.

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A fond farewell

Private funeral for poet laureate set for Saturday

Funeral services for poet laureate Dr. Maya Angelou will be held Saturday, June 7 at Wake Forest University. The university will stream the service live on its website for the public's viewing at 10 p.m., according to the school's website.

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Historic Overtown building destroyed

Site was original home of 112-year old Greater Israel Bethel Primitive Baptist Church

It has existed since Woodrow Wilson was president. One of few historic structures in Overtown, the church building had held numerous weddings, baptisms and Sunday services and had stood years before Booker T. Washington opened as Miami-Dade’s second-oldest public school in 1926.

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Transit hub expected to use acres of space in Historic Overtown

All Aboard Florida held a press conference Wednesday morning at the future site of their Downtown Miami train station. The long-awaited plans have drawn mixed-emotions in the Overtown community. As many already know, the two Miami sites will encompass nearly three million square feet of residential commercial, office, retail, parking which will mostly all located at the Overtown site.

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Young author striving for greatness with latest book

Zachary Cross planning to release more stories

With his latest book, 22-year-old Zachary O. Cross seeks to stimulate the hearts and minds of readers by introducing them to the exclusive way of seeing themselves and everything else around them. Welcome to the Exclusive Zone: Equip your mind and all else falls into place. Covers nearly all the bases in the foundation of an individual’s daily walk, from identity, giving, positivity, finances, plus more.

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lifestyle happenings

The Parkway Junior/Middle Alumni Association will have a luncheon 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sat., June 7 at Parkway Middle Community School. Call 305-624-9613 Ext 2207. Pillars of Strength no. 2 Masonic Lodge will host its 4th annual Father’s Day party boat fishing trip on June 14. Call 305-254-6610.

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Stars of tomorrow

Preparing youth today to be more successful

Here today, a successful adult tomorrow are the words Jemmy Jasmin, founder of Stars of Tomorrow Foundation, lives by. North Miami Beach native and Miami Edison Senior High alumnus, Jasmin says he couldn’t recall a single professional athlete that made it to the big leagues and then came back and to reach out to the youth in the community — so he set out to change that.

Greater Israel Bethel honors grads with special Baccalaureate service

There were plenty of hallelujahs with pomp and circumstance as Greater Israel Bethel Primitive Baptist Church in Overtown held its annual Baccalaureate service on Sunday. It was a spiritual boost to high school and college graduates as they face new challenges in their lives.

Girlfriend charged with killing veteran Miami police officer

She told police her boyfriend accidentally shot himself before he died. But Pembroke Pines police accuse Tinikio Thompson of murdering veteran Miami police officer Carl Patrick, who was found dead in his Pembroke Pines home last month. At her mother’s home in Opa-locka last Wednesday, one day after what would have been Patrick’s 53rd birthday, Thompson, 46, was arrested and charged with second-degree murder. Authorities escorted her to the Broward County jail where she is being held without bond.

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Booker T. Washington ahead of the class

Booker T. Washington in Overtown has been the Florida’s Class 4A Football Champions for the past two years. It has been a triumphant year of parades and celebrations for the Tornadoes, the alma mater of many of the Black community’s most prominent professionals and businessmen.

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The Strachans hope to “Impact and re-unite”

Ricardo Strachan, 36, was born in Nassau, Bahamas to the parentage of Marquetta and Samuel Strachan, and according to his stepfather, Elder Keith Humes, he is “an anointed, dynamic, apostolic, and prophetic voice for the 21st century kingdom advancement."

Wednesday, June 4

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Dignataries, hundreds celebrate opening of Miami Gardens City Hall

Mayor Gilbert opens the building with grand ceremony, speech

Miami Gardens mayor Oliver Gilbert opened the new city hall building Tuesday night with a grand ceremony and a state of the city address that reaffirmed his ambitions to fighting crime and transforming the city into world-class community for middle-class Black professionals.

Tuesday, June 3

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Portraits of Black Success: High School Seniors Graduate

Miami's seniors take to the graduation stage

Black high school students around Miami-Dade County are taking the next step in their lives by graduating.