Former Washington, DC, mayor and civil rights activist Marion Barry has died, hospital spokeswoman confirms.
Marion Barry, Jr. (March 6, 1936 – November 23, 2014) was an American politician who served as the second elected Mayor of the District of Columbia from 1979 to 1991, and again as the fourth Mayor from 1995 to 1999. He has been a member of the Council of the District of Columbia, representing Washington, D.C.’s Ward 8, since 2005.
A Democrat, Barry previously served two other tenures on the DC Council, as an at-large member from 1975 to 1979 and as Ward 8 representative from 1993 to 1995.
In the 1960s, he was involved in the African-American Civil Rights Movement, serving as the first chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).
Barry came to national prominence as mayor of the national capital, the first prominent civil-rights activist to become chief executive of a major American city; he gave the presidential nomination speech for Jesse Jackson at the 1984 Democratic National Convention.
His celebrity transformed into international notoriety in January 1990, when Barry was videotaped smoking crack cocaine and arrested by FBI officials on drug charges. The arrest and subsequent trial precluded Barry seeking re-election, and Barry served six months in a federal prison. After his release, however, he was elected to the DC city council in 1992 and ultimately returned to the mayoralty in 1994, serving from 1995 to 1999.
Source: Wikipedia has contributed to the article / Nov. 23, 2014