William “Bill” Blair Jr., a pioneering newspaper publishing and civil rights leader from Dallas,Texas, died this Sunday. Blair was 92.
Blair was the founder of Elite News, a publication he began after a stint as pitcher in the Negro Leagues. Born in Dallas on October 21, 1921, he attended Booker T. Washington High School and began pitching at the age of 16 before going on to play for several Negro League Baseball between 1946 and 1951. Blair also briefly attended Prairie View A&M University before joining the military.
In his biography, Blair wrote that he was the youngest Black first sergeant to serve in the U.S. Army during World War II at 19. After an injury to his pitching arm, Blair retired from the game. Blair’s first foray into publishing began in 1947 when he started Highlight News. Following that effort, in 1949 he established Southwest Sports News.
The Southwest Sports News focused on African-American collegiate sports. In 1960, Blair changed the name of the paper to Elite (pronounced “E-light”) News and rebranded it to cover events in the Dallas-Forth Worth African-American and church community. Blair was instrumental in getting the Martin Luther King Jr. Parade established in Dallas almost 30 years ago.
A tireless contributor to the legacy of African-Americans in Dallas, the city honored Blair by renaming Rochester Park in his honor. In 2012, Blair donated his collection of newspapers and Negro League memorabilia to the University of Texas at Arlington.
Blair’s wife of 70 years, Mozelle Jordan, was his high school sweetheart and the couple had seven children. Blair stepped down as publisher of Elite News years ago, but with instructions that it continues to serve the Dallas-Forth Worth community. His son Daryl has been charged with handling the family’s affairs and said his father worked until his final days. “
I’m 48. I had 48 years with my Dad. He had 92 years on this Earth, and he used 91-and-a-half of them to service everyone he could,” the younger Blair said to WFAA. “Even when he was in the bed, he’d try to make calls to help somebody else.” Blair’s funeral service will be held this Friday at the Concord Baptist Church in Dallas at 11 a.m.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (11/26-12/2)
30 photos Launch gallery
1. Little Legend and Puddy 😍😍😍😍
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2. "You on point Phife?" "all the time,Tip". 💥 #bannedfromnormal
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3. Vegan! The Impossible burger at Crossroads
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4. Lawrence #BeforeandAfterEpisodes 1-4: 184lbs 13% body fatEpisode 8: 196lbs 8% body fat S/O @coachdaveboxing with the works outs and @kildareriordan with the nutrition
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5. Jus haaaanngin out
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6. Meanwhile back at home in Atlanta GA someone mad they not on the 🛳. 😳
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7. No limits... Photo cred: Chris Bridges @ludacris
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8. new new
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9. Apparently my 260lbs is too much for the actual vines in the Hawaiian jungles to hold me without breaking and me falling hundreds of feet. So for safety purposes, I'm forced to swing thru #Jumanjj on wires strong enough to hold 12 adult buffaloes and 1 adult Rock. #OnSet #Jumanji #IronicallyIEatBuffaloDailyForLunch #MoreManThanNatureKnowsWhatToDoWith
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10. hey ma! 🎎#wcw 💙
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11. Surprise visit to our factories!!! #GoodAmerican #USA
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13. Peachy Keen 🔥✨⚡️
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14. If this don't look thankful I don't know what does. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. #UltraBlessed #24kMagic #SweetPotatoFly
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15. Late nights @nbcmarlon with the writers... we in here!!!
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16. There goes my baaaaaaaaabbbbyyyyy #QueenKingMagic!!! We're up to something! Ira BIG!!! Stay out our buisness -
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17. You want to win every game you play but when you come home to these faces... who cares. #ILoveYouGirls best part of my day, everyday!
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18. Steady,steady..... full size jenga.. "I got this one "???? Or do I ?
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19. Cornrows kind of day 😉@dontaysavoy2 you convinced me and I love. ❤️️
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20. #BrotherlyLove #tbt
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22. #basel #TeamLOVE @kingcombs
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23. Just introduced a special screening of @directher 's groundbreaking (must see) documentary @13thfilm with my brother @themichaelealy | @unitedblackout #blackoutblackfriday
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24. Me & Vanessa Williams giving #DuckLips #Pose on the set of #DaytimeDivas @vh1 - Coming Soon to a tv near you. Lol. - My make up done by @makeupsurgeon
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25. This picture just makes me wanna praise the Lord, you hear me!!!!!! Yes Lord brotha #TEDDYCAMPBELL What a #man !!! You are everything right on this picture husband ......... #gorgeous #stylish #classy #strong #masculine #king #sexy #debonair #gentlemenstyle And that #bible in your hand just seals the deal for me (probably cause i know that, that is what helped you become just as amazing as you look😘). While my heart and mind experiences the goodness of God at #church on Sundays, my eyes experiences the goodness of Teddy😍. Amen somebody🙌🏽. "Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name" #myman #myhusband #goodman #blackman #dapperman #godlyman #goodfather #mybestfriend
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26. Yesterday was my mama's 53rd birthday!!!!! Got to celebrate with her all day. If this is what I have to look forward to I can't wait. Looking like a soft bucket a cocoa butter. Yaaaaaaaaaas! 😍😍😍 love you mommy!
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27. "Shout out to @PureAtlanta for getting the family right"....I'm loving this jogger. 😍😍
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28. This pic warms my heart ❤️ #myLogiebeans and aunt aunt umba @itowandabraxton 😘
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29. You will always be my baby😜. #HappyBirthdayReginae #mybaby18
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30. GC "Gods Child" Red on Red SweatSuit available now at www.MonicaApparel.com ... Take Your Crown wherever you go!! I'm pictured in a Medium... Go to the site now for other options ... cc: @trukernell
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