As many as 300 mourners, including Leesburg and Loudoun County officials, past and present, and family and friends, packed St. James Episcopal Church on Thursday to remember John W. Tolbert Jr., Leesburg's first black Town Council member.
Tolbert, who was a chef for 65 years and served on dozens of commissions and volunteer boards, died Dec. 3 at Loudoun Hospital Center. He was 94.
In his homily, the Rev. John Ohmer said Tolbert considered his years of service to the community "an honor and a privilege. . . . Our world needs more people with the grace, humor and gentleman-like qualities of John Tolbert," Ohmer said.
After the funeral, the mourners walked a short block to Mount Zion Cemetery for the burial service.
CAPTION: Hundreds of mourners attend burial services Thursday for John W. Tolbert Jr., who was long active in community affairs and the first black member of the Leesburg Town Council. At right, Dashawn Smith, 5, Tolbert's great-grandson, is comforted during the service.
CAPTION: A procession of church members, friends and family, above, makes its way to Mount Zion Cemetery, where Tolbert was buried. At left, Sandra Collier, standing, hugs Charelle Davis, Tolbert's granddaughter. Tolbert, who was 94, served on many commissions and volunteer boards.