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Central Standard

LISTEN: Remembering Rev. Nelson 'Fuzzy' Thompson

For nearly 50 years, the Rev. Nelson "Fuzzy" Thompson fought for civil rights in America and abroad. Thompson was a follower of Martin Luther King Jr. and a major proponent of nonviolent protest. 

Thompson was laid to rest Saturday, just two days before Martin Luther King Day. We caught up with those who knew Thompson best at his memorial service. 


  • Ralph Reid, retired Sprint Foundation president
  • Alvin Sykes, human rights worker and activist
  • Robert Sylvan, Thompson's classmate
  • Leonard Zeskind, human rights advocate
  • Rev. Sam Mann, retired minister, Thompson's friend and co-worker
  • Arlana Coleman, organizer for the Southern Christian Leadership Conference's Martin Luther King Day celebrations in Kansas City.
Central Standard civil rights
Cody Newill is part of KCUR's audience development team. Follow him on Twitter @CodyNewill or email him at cody@kcur.org.