Prominent Kansas City Civil Rights Leader Nelson 'Fuzzy' Thompson Dies | KCUR

Prominent Kansas City Civil Rights Leader Nelson 'Fuzzy' Thompson Dies

Jan 11, 2015

Reverand Nelson "Fuzzy" Thompson died early Sunday morning in Kansas City.
Credit Royal Photography LLC

Services for Rev. Nelson "Fuzzy" Thompson have been scheduled for Saturday, Jan. 17. Visitation will be from 11:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. The funeral will be at 1:00 p.m. at St. James United Methodist Church, 5540 Wayne Ave., Kansas City.

A giant of Kansas City's civil rights movement and an outspoken — often controversial — crusader against racism and discrimination has died.  

The Rev. Nelson "Fuzzy" Thompson passed away early Sunday. He was 70 years old. 

Thompson was the president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference of Greater Kansas City for decades, an ordained United Methodist Minister, and a long time member of the Kansas City Human Rights Commission.

Thompson devoted his life to improving race relations from Kansas City to South Africa. Every year, he had a major hand in making the Kansas City celebration of Martin Luther King Day one of the largest in the nation.

Thompson had a kidney replacement almost 10 years ago and suffered a number of other health problems. His illnesses had become particularly acute in recent months and he was in hospice care at the time of his death, according to The Kansas City Star.

Thompson visited with Central Standard's Gina Kaufmann about race relations in August. Susan Wilson also visited Thompson at his home in 2011 and produced this profile for KC Currents.