Evelyn Lowery, wife of civil rights leader, dies at 88


Evelyn G. Lowery and the Rev. Joseph Lowery attend the 50th Anniversary March on Washington at the Lincoln Memorial on August 28, 2013. (Nikki Kahn/The Washington Post)
September 26, 2013

Evelyn Lowery, the wife of the Rev. Joseph Lowery, a civil rights leader, died Sept. 26 at her home in Atlanta. She was 88.

The cause was a stroke, said family spokeswoman Diane Larche. Joseph Lowery, a founder and former president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, and his wife were in Birmingham, Ala., earlier this month for the 50th anniversary of a racist church bombing that killed four black girls in 1963.

Evelyn Lowery founded SCLC/WOMEN in 1979. The group works to empower women, girls and families. She also created the Drum Major of Justice Awards held annually in April in Atlanta.

The daughter of a Methodist preacher, Evelyn Gibson was born Feb. 16, 1925, in Memphis.

Besides her husband, whom she married in 1948, survivors include three daughters; a sister; and many grandchildren.