Memorial for Hill District legend a 'fitting' service
When Eric Mann met Thelma Williams Lovette, he remembers her talking about two things — her love for the Hill District and the YMCA.
“Its sole purpose is to serve the community, and that's what her sole purpose was,” he said during a memorial service for her on Friday afternoon.
Hundreds of people — young and old — filed into the gymnasium at the Thelma Lovette YMCA on Centre Avenue to pay their respects. The longtime civil-rights activist died May 24 in Arizona. She was 98.
Lovette was the first woman to serve on the boards of the then-Centre Avenue YMCA and the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh. The YMCA bearing her name opened in 2012.
“When you think of her,” said Mann, former CEO of the YMCA of Greater Pittsburgh, “there's no better place her legacy will live on.”
Friends and family spoke of their favorite memories of Lovette.
Daughter Thelma Lovette Morris talked about the wisdom that Lovette gave to young people — where you start out may not be where you end up.
Lovette was a living example of that wisdom, Morris said. Her mother started out as a dishwasher and retired as supervisor of social works at Mercy Hospital in Uptown. She was a president of the board of the Hill District Community Development Corp., in addition to other involvement and activism in the neighborhood.
“It's very fitting and proper that we do this for a lady who gave so much to the community and life,” the Rev. Johnnie Monroe, who officiated the service, said beforehand. “It's a good tribute to her and to her family and to the work she has done.”
Some attendees had little connection to Lovette other than recognizing her name.
Tracey Jennings, 54, of the Hill District, said she met Lovette once at the YMCA and was “so honored to be in her presence.”
“I'm so glad to be a part of this,” she said. “She was the Hill District.”
Megan Henney is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-320-7987 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Fix for issues vowed at Pittsburgh VA
- 3 Brentwood council members submit resignation letters
- Leadership rises as issue for Pa. voters in new poll
- Bakery Square town houses plans to go to Pittsburgh city planners
- Citation of police observer called ‘abuse of power’ by Pittsburgh police
- Density, divide complicate effort to cull deer in Mt. Lebanon
- Penn Hills school board accepts building sale
- Some riled, others resigned to high earners in Pittsburgh public housing
- Pittsburgh region enjoys healthy dose of ‘brain gain’
- Four questioned in Glen Hazel shooting of teen