‘Our parents never instilled that kind of fear in us’ – Prof. Michele Gregory on Her Father, Dick Gregory

YORK COLLEGE — Civil rights activist and humorist Dick Gregory passed away due to heart failure at the age of 84 on Aug. 19 in Washington, DC. The first paragraph of his obituary in the New York Times described him as, “the pioneering satirist who transformed cool humor into a barbed force for civil rights in the 1960s.”

As a complex and controversial public figure beginning his stand-up career in the late 1950’s, Gregory is frequently compared with Lenny Bruce for his outspoken views on American society and credited with paving the way for African American comics like Bill Cosby and Richard Pryor.