FAMU Hosts Viewing of Longtime President Frederick Humphries
On Friday, a steady stream of people entered the Lee Hall Auditorium on the Florida A&M University campus to pay their last respects to President Emeritus Frederick S. Humphries, one of the world’s most famous graduates and leaders. university.
Humphries, who served as FAMU president from 1985-2001, died June 24 in Orlando. He was 85 years old.
Humphries’ body, clad in a dark suit, blue shirt, and tie, lay in front of the auditorium. Inside his coffin were the words “May the work I have done speak for me.”
Over a dozen large bouquets of flowers surrounded the top of the auditorium stage. A large photo of Humphries was projected onto a video screen on stage, with the inscription “The Standard for Black Excellence in Higher Education,” Frederick Humphries, PhD. “
His family and close friends took the front row.
Heritage: Dr. Frederick Humphries’ legacy of uplifting HBCUs has gone beyond Florida A&M University
FAMUly: In their own words: “FAMUly”, friends remember the late President Emeritus Frederick Humphries
Memories: “Larger than Life”: Former President Frederick S. Humphries Remembers as a Force for FAMU
Thursday evening: President Frederick Humphries, two others honored at the Eternal Flame
Wash Anderson, Tallahassee Urban League program coordinator and 1990 FAMU graduate, and his wife, Thesla Anderson, a 1986 graduate, were among the first attendees at the screening.
“We are here to pay tribute to Dr Humphries and his family,” Wash Anderson said. “He was a strong and committed education leader who believed in the power of educational benefits for all students at Florida A&M University.”
Thesla Anderson, executive director of outreach at Florida State University College of Medicine, said she was friends with Humphries’ daughter Robin Tanya Humphries Watson.
“We are here to offer our support to the family and to pay tribute and condolences to the life of such an amazing educational leader, student advocate and mentor,” she said. “He was a man with a vision and a plan, and he made sure those plans were executed with a positive result.”
Humphries’ legacy at Florida A&M is marked by his resounding success in increasing enrollment, his focus on recruiting some of the best black students in the country, and raising the bar in fundraising by courting business partners across the country.
Prior to accepting the FAMU presidency, Humphries served as president of Tennessee State University from 1974 to 1985, where he is credited with thwarting attempts to merge the HBCU with the University of Tennessee at Nashville.
For many, Humphries was a leader who instilled pride in Florida A&M University and historically black colleges and universities across the country.
Humphries, a native of Apalachicola and a FAMU graduate, maintained his popularity among FAMU worshipers long after his resignation, often returning to campus for events and football matches.
The afternoon viewing of Humphries was followed later on Friday by a wake-up and Omega service run by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., of which Humphries was a member.
Thousands of people are expected to attend his funeral at 1 p.m. on Saturday at the Lawson Center.
Contact senior writer Byron Dobson at [email protected] or on Twitter @byrondobson.
Never miss a story: Subscribe to the Tallahassee Democrat using the link at the top of the page.
Alfred Lawson, Jr., Multipurpose Gymnasium
- 11:30 am-12:30pm: Dr. Humphries Lying In Repose (Public viewing)
- 1 p.m. to 3 p.m .: Memorial service
As of 8:00 a.m. on Saturday, LS Barley Lot, Bragg Stadium / Howard Hall Lot and South Pavilion Lot will be closed for funerals.
Persons attending the funeral service are authorized to use the following grounds: the garage parking lot, the Bragg stadium parking lot, the reception center grounds, the business and industrial school grounds, the complex grounds Gore Education Center on Gamble Street and Charles Winterwood Library grounds. .
The Venom shuttle will transport participants to and from the funeral service.
FAMU encourages mourners to wear face coverings. Participants are urged not to take photos of Dr Humphries while he is in the state.
The funeral service will be broadcast live on FAMU TV 20 (Xfinity Channel 20) from 12:30 p.m. The event will also be broadcast live on FAMUTube1887, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Zoom.
To view on Zoom:
The Meek-Eaton Black Archives have created a commemorative exhibit to celebrate the life and legacy of Humphries. Using items from the Fred Humphries Collection, the exhibit will highlight Humphries’ presidential tenure, memorabilia from the FAMU Centennial Celebration and College of the Year Celebration, and other artifacts.
The exhibition will be open to the public from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday and will remain open to the public throughout the summer.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the FAMU Life Gets Better Scholarships, Graduate Feeding Program, Distinguished Scholar Post, and a statue in honor of Humphries at my.famu.edu/donation/drhumphries.