Black Panther Party Founder Passes away at 80

Black Panther Party Co-Founder Elbert ‘Big Man’ Howard Passes Away at 80

News broke that Black Panther Party co-founder Elbert “Big Man” Howard passed away. Elbert passed away at the age of 80. According to his wife—Carole Hyams, Big Man passed away in Santa Rosa, California on Monday (July 30).

Howard, Huey Newton, Bobby Seale, and others founded the Black Panther Party for Self-Defense in October 1966 in Oakland, California. Howard’s role found him serving as the newspaper editor, logistics guy, and information officer for the party.

Howard left the Black Panther Party in 1974 after members crucial to the organization left. It was revealed later on that the FBI was conducting surveillance and constantly harassed the party with the hopes of incriminating them. Party Archivist Billy X. Jennings spoke on Howard saying “He was a beloved member. People might have had different grudges against Bobby or Eldridge [Cleaver], but nobody got a grudge against Big Man.”