Former Prince George's County Executive Wayne Curry remembered - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

Former Prince George's County Executive Wayne Curry remembered

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Hundreds of residents of Prince George’s County took time out of their workday on Wednesday to pay their respects to the late County Executive Wayne Curry. His funeral will be held Thursday.

An honor guard of Prince George’s County police officers solemnly conveyed the coffin of Wayne Curry into the County Administration Building in mid-morning. Inside, rotating teams of officers flanked the remains, which were also surrounded by dozens of roses. A painting of the dashingly handsome late county executive was placed next to the coffin. Curry died of lung cancer earlier this week. He was 63.

Curry, in in mid-1990s, bucked the dominant political establishment to become the first black elected county executive in a jurisdiction that had become majority black. He pushed hard -- and often successfully -- for development, for jobs and for respect for his county.

Curry was also a mentor to the next generation of office-holders. State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks remembers attending many football games with Curry.

“And, during the course of those Redskins games,” Alsobrooks told us, “he would talk the entire time about what was expected of leaders. And we talked, literally, the whole game, and at the end of the game, I was generally exhausted. But I am so grateful today for the all the wisdom he passed on to me and to others.”

A steady stream of visitors came to pay their respects to the two-term county executive, and to chat briefly with the family members of Curry.

Why did they come? Bridget Gazelle, who works for Prince George’s County, told us, “I mean, he’s done so much for the county, made such a difference and … I wanted to make sure that I recognized him and his family, and keep them in my thoughts and prayers.”

Bernadette Pierce, a county resident, said, “I’ll always remember his smile. I just loved – every time he would speak to you, he always had a big grin on his face … a big smile. He was a wonderful person.”

“I came,” Geneva Pearson explained, “because when anybody makes an impact in our life, we need to take a minute to pause and give respect to them -- even in death. And to also make a statement for the people left behind.”

Shirley Thompson, another Prince George’s County resident, declared, “He actually put Prince George’s County on the map, you know. He wanted the best for this county. And that’s just what I loved about him. He did his best to make this county the best.”

A final goodbye for Curry will take place Thursday at the First Baptist Church of Glenarden. There will be a public viewing at 9:30 a.m. and a funeral service at 11 a.m.

Former Prince George’s County Executive Wayne K. Curry to Lie in State
Wednesday, July 9, 2014, 9:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.
Prince George’s County Administration Building, (CAB), 1st Floor Lobby
14741 Governor Oden Bowie Drive
Upper Marlboro, MD

8:30 a.m.: Arrival of former County Executive Curry’s casket on Courthouse side of CAB
9:00 a.m.: Remarks by Prince George’s County Executive Rushern L. Baker, III, Prince George’s County Council Chairman Mel Franklin (D-District 9) Judge Sheila R. Tillerson Adams, Administrative Judge for Seventh Judicial Circuit and Circuit Court for Prince George's County, and Reverend Perry Smith
9:20 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.: Public visitation   

On Thursday, July 10, 2014, a funeral service will be held at First Baptist Church of Glenarden, 600 Watkins Park Drive, in Upper Marlboro, MD.  Public viewing will begin at 9:30 a.m. and the service will begin at 11:00 a.m.  For questions about the funeral, please contact the First Baptist Church of Glenarden at 301-773-3600 or email to


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