Racist slurs interrupt on-line memorial for Phoenix civil rights icon

One of Calvin C. Goode’s sons, Vernon “Zina” Goode, poses with members of his family on Saturday, January 9, 2021, in Phoenix, Arizona, near the open coffin of former Phoenix Vice Mayor and Alderman Calvin C. Goode Goode died on Wednesday, December 23, 2020. He was 93 years old. (AP Photo / Cheyanne Mumphrey)

PHOENIX – A virtual memorial to Phoenix civil rights icon Calvin Goode was disrupted Tuesday when the online presentation was hijacked by a man who repeatedly spat out racial slurs while Mayor Kate Gallego spoke.

The hideous comments began about 35 minutes after the livestream service for Goode, a former city councilor who died on December 23 at the age of 93.

The AME church in the Tanner Chapel hosted the stream on their Facebook page, and attendees signed up via Zoom. The racist intruder is believed to have broken into the zoom feed.

Gallego praised Goode’s legacy when the intruder turned them off. The video ended abruptly and the church soon resumed the memorial in a new stream.

Gallego said on Twitter that the Phoenix Police Department and the FBI are investigating the “disgusting” attack.

The Phoenix Police and the FBI are coordinating the investigation into the sickening attack on Vice Mayor Goode’s memorial service. We do not tolerate hate crimes.

– Mayor Kate Gallego (@MayorGallego) January 12, 2021

Goode was the Phoenix City’s second black councilor and the longest-serving elected official in its history. He served on the Council from 1972 to 1994, including serving as Vice Mayor in 1974 and 1984.

He spent his time fighting to improve the quality of life for low-income black residents of Phoenix long after his final days on the council. He continued to advocate equal opportunities, affordable housing, and education through several organizations, including the Eastlake Neighborhood Association and the George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center.

Next week, the city is celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s holiday with a virtual award ceremony in honor of the newest recipient of the Calvin C. Goode Lifetime Achievement Award.

A public tour for Goode took place on Saturday in front of the city building named after him in the city center.

Taylor Kinnerup and The Associated Press of KTAR News 92.3 FM contributed to this report.

Follow @ ktar923

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