Martha Rivera Chavis, the devoted wife of noted Wilmington 10 civil rights leader and National Newspaper Publishers Association President and CEO Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis, Jr., has died.
Rivera Chavis passed away in her home in Montclair, N.J. at on Thursday, July 6, 2017. She was 53.
“As First Lady of the NNPA and as the former First Lady of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People from 1993 to 1994, Martha Rivera Chavis was a loving mother and strong advocate for freedom, justice and equality in the United States, Africa, and the Dominican Republic,” Dr. Chavis said in a statement released early Thursday.
Chavis and his wife met in June 1989 after the civil rights activist had spent time in Angola, where American-backed rebels mined civilian areas. She was employed as a French-to-Portuguese translator for Angola’s United Nations ambassador.
The couple has eight children—five together and three from Dr. Chavis’s previous marriage.
Funeral arrangements are expected to be announced later. Messages of condolence should be sent to the NNPA National Office, 1816 12th St NW, Washington, D.C., 20009.