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Obit Benjamin Hooks

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — After years of fighting for social justice, civil rights leader Benjamin L. Hooks will be laid to rest.

Political leaders and Hooks’ peers in the civil rights movement from across the country are expected to attend his funeral in Memphis on Wednesday.

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The 85-year-old former lawyer, judge and NAACP director died last week at his Memphis home after a long illness.

President Richard Nixon nominated Hooks to the Federal Communications Commission in 1972. He was its first black commissioner and served five years before resigning to lead the NAACP from 1977 to 1992.

Hooks took over as the NAACP’s executive director at a time when the organization’s stature had diminished. By the time he left in 1992, membership had grown by several hundred thousand.

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