Assemblymember Holly Mitchell (D-Culver City) issued a statement following the death of former California Lt. Gov., congressman and Assemblymember Mervyn Dymally.
Dymally died Sunday in Los Angeles at the age of 86 and a viewing will be held on Oct. 17 from 9 a.m. to noon at Holy Cross Mortuary, 5835 W. Slauson Ave., in Culver City, followed by the funeral at 12:30 p.m.
“The passing of Merv Dymally leaves a chasm in the ranks of the leadership of California and the African American community,” Mitchell said in an official release.
“As America's first black Lieutenant Governor since Reconstruction, he broke the barrier, took his rightful seat among elected powerbrokers, and invited others to follow. His courtly presence and shrewd counsel never waned. He was our ‘Senior Statesman.’ I am proud to have known him."
Dymally, a native of Trinidad and Tobago, served as California's 41st lieutenant governor from 1975 to 1979 after serving in the Assembly from 1963 to 1966 and the state Senate from 1967 to 1975.
Dymally represented southern Los Angeles County in Congress from 1981 to 1993 and returned to the Assembly from 2002 to 2008.
He is survived by his wife, a daughter, a son and three sisters.
A memorial fund has been established to honor his career and legacy. Donations can be made online at https://www.wepay.com/donations/dymallymemorialfund.
In lieu of cards, flowers and gifts, Spokesperson Jasmyne Cannick said the family asked that donations be made in his name to “causes and organizations that he so passionately cared about: health and education.”