Hughes Van Ellis Wiki, Obituary, Death: hHughes Van Ellis, one of the last known survivors of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre, passed away at the age of 102. He spent his later years tirelessly pursuing justice for his family and the descendants of those affected by the horrific attack on “Black Wall Street.” Known affectionately as “Uncle Redd” by his family and community, Mr. Van Ellis died while in hospice in Denver.
Hughes Van Ellis Wiki
|Name||Hughes Van Ellis|
|Date of Birth||[Birthdate not specified]|
|Date of Death||Monday, [Date of Passing]|
|Age at Death||102 years|
|Place of Death||Denver, Colorado|
|Family||Survived by grandnephew Ike Howard, sister Viola Ford Fletcher|
|Background||World War II veteran|
|Advocate||Pursued justice for Tulsa Race Massacre victims|
|Legal Battle||Engaged in a legal battle with the City of Tulsa for reparations|
|Last Known Survivors||One of the last three known survivors of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre|
|Legacy||Inspirational figure dedicated to seeking justice and remembering history|
Hughes Van Ellis was only 6 months old when he and his family managed to escape the Tulsa Race Massacre, a brutal and dark chapter in American history. This tragic event saw a violent White mob wreak havoc in the thriving Black community of Greenwood District, resulting in the death of hundreds of residents and the destruction of numerous homes and businesses.
Hughes Van Ellis Obituary
Like countless other Black families, the Ellises were forced to leave behind not just their homes but also a lifetime of opportunities. In his own words earlier this year, Mr. Van Ellis lamented, “I lost 102 years. I don’t want nobody else to lose that.”
The Tulsa Race Massacre is among the deadliest acts of racial violence in the United States. The White mob targeted the area often referred to as “Black Wall Street,” committing arson, shootings, and even aerial bombings from private planes. The toll was devastating, with as many as 300 people losing their lives and over 1,000 homes estimated to have been destroyed, according to the Tulsa Historical Society and Museum.
Hughes Van Ellis, along with his 109-year-old sister Viola Ford Fletcher and 108-year-old Lessie Benningfield Randle, were the last three known survivors of this terrible event. They have been engaged in a lengthy legal
battle with the City of Tulsa and other city officials, striving to secure reparations for the destruction that took place over a century ago.
In July, an Oklahoma judge dismissed the survivors’ lawsuit against the city, and their attorneys have since appealed the decision. The state Supreme Court has agreed to consider the appeal, although a hearing date remains uncertain.
The city has argued that it should not be held responsible for historical damages, but for the siblings, the memories of that fateful night have haunted them since childhood. As their family fled in a horse-drawn wagon,
desperately trying to escape the burning buildings and aircraft overhead, they witnessed the devastation and loss that the massacre brought.
“Two days ago, Mr. Ellis urged us to keep fighting for justice,” the family shared in a statement. “In the midst of his passing, an unwavering sense of right and wrong endures. Mr. Ellis was confident that we would remain steadfast, and we assured him by echoing his own words, ‘We Are One,’ as we expressed our love.”
Mr. Hughes Van Ellis was not only a survivor but also a “loving family man” and a World War II veteran. His remarkable life continues to inspire us, and we celebrate his legacy and dedication to seeking justice.
Viola Fletcher and Hughes Van Ellis
Viola Fletcher and Hughes Van Ellis, two extraordinary individuals, were among the last known survivors of the devastating Tulsa Race Massacre, a horrifying event in American history.
Viola Fletcher: At the time of her passing, Viola Fletcher was 109 years old, and her strength and resilience were an inspiration to us all. She, along with her family, fled the Greenwood District in Tulsa during the tragic events of 1921. The memories of that fateful night haunted her throughout her life.
In her later years, Viola joined a legal battle to seek justice for the destruction and loss that her community endured. She never gave up, even as challenges arose on the path to accountability.
Hughes Van Ellis (Uncle Redd): Known as “Uncle Redd” within his community, Hughes Van Ellis passed away at the age of 102. His story is equally compelling. He was just a baby of six months when he, too, escaped the Tulsa Race Massacre with his family. His desire was simple yet profound – to prevent others from losing precious years to history.
Uncle Redd was not only a survivor but also a World War II veteran. His life’s work was dedicated to seeking justice and reminding us all of the importance of remembering our history.