Black Caucus Chairman Mourns Loss of Donald Tucker

NEWARK – Senator Ronald L. Rice, Chairman of the Legislative Black Caucus, today said the death of Assemblyman Donald K. Tucker “marks a tremendous loss to New Jerseys entire Urban population.”

Senator Rice, D-28th District, attended the funeral services here for his Assembly colleague who died on Monday, October 17.

“Assemblyman Tucker and I sat on the Newark City Council together for 16 years,” said Senator Rice. “When he decided to run for an Assembly seat, he and Assemblyman Craig Stanley were my running mates. Politically, Donald Tucker was my best friend. He was also a role model for those of us who knew we had to make a difference in the community.

Senator Rice praised Assemblyman Tucker, a Newark City Councilman since 1974, for his “tireless efforts” to improve living conditions for tenants and housing availability for low-income residents.

“Donald Tucker fought the good fight for the residents of Newark because he knew that solving the City’s problems meant fighting drug abuse and improving educational opportunity for our children,” Senator Rice said.

As Chairman of the Black Issues Convention, Assemblyman Tucker was instrumental in bringing issues of importance in the Black Community to the attention of decision makers in Trenton and in Washington.

Senator Rice said Assemblyman Tucker’s activism in fighting for racial justice will forever be his legacy.

“Donald Tucker set the standard for fighting injustice because he got in the trenches and fought the battles that had to be fought,” Senator Rice said. “When the Civil Rights Movement was in full swing in the South, Donald Tucker was standing side by side with all those who made a difference.

“My deep sympathies are extended to Assemblyman Tucker’s wife, Cleopatra, and his entire family.”

Black Caucus members also in attendance for Assemblyman Tucker’s funeral included Assemblywoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, D-Mercer and Assemblymen Craig Stanley, D-Essex and William D. Payne, D-Essex, and others. Caucus members in attendance for last night’s viewing included Senators Nia H. Gill, D-Essex and Passaic and Wayne R. Bryant, D-Camden and Gloucester and Assemblyman Mims R. Hackett, D-Essex.