Marcus Garvey III, Eldest Son of Jamaican Nationalist Marcus Garvey, Dies At 90

Marcus Garvey III, the son of Pan-African activist and Black nationalist Marcus Garvey, died at his home in Wellington, Florida. He was 90 years old and passed away after a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease.

Marcus Garvey III was an activist and engineer who was born in St. Andrew, Jamaica, in 1930. His father passed 10 years after his birth and was the founder of the Universal Negro Improvement Association and African Communities League (UNIA-ACL) in Jamaica. Following in his father’s footsteps, Marcus Garvey III became president of the United Negro Improvement Association in the 1990s. The lifelong activist retired in Wellington in 2002.

His father was an international influence, whose approach to Black liberation included the belief that Black people should return to Africa. He is viewed as a forefather of the civil rights movement.

Reflecting on his life, his wife Jean told the Palm Beach Post about when Garvey witnessed the historic win of former President Barack Obama in 2008. The moment was a path paved by activists like Garvey III’s father.

She told the Post that even though Garvey III had Alzheimer’s then, “he had tears coming down his cheeks” and that he understood the importance of President Obama’s rise.

Garvey III is survived by his wife, sons Colin and Kyler-Sekou, stepdaughter Michelle Morris, younger brother Dr. Julius Garvey and four grandchildren.

A statement written by Jean reads, “The departure of Marcus [III], whom I had been married to for over 30 years, will leave a void that cannot be filled, and he will be greatly missed by numerous family, friends, and colleagues from all over the world, in many places where he had left indelible footprints.”

Prime Minister Andrew Holness of Jamaica has said he will speak with South Florida’s consul general to discuss the memorialization of the deceased’s life and legacy.