MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) -- Mobile City Councilman Levon C. Manzie has died.
Manzie, who represented the city's District 2 on the council for eight years and was serving as the body's president, died late Sunday night after a long illness, according to the family.
Manzie, a fourth-generation minister, was pastor at St. Joseph Missionary Baptist Church in Whistler.
The Mobile native also was a past member of the Mobile County School Board and a graduate of Murphy High School and Troy University.
The Mobile City Council released the following:
The Mobile City Council is mourning the loss of Council President Rev. Levon Charles Manzie. A fourth-generation minister, Manzie was a true leader, who loved his community and was passionate about serving the citizens of Mobile. Not only was he our colleague, but he was also a shining example of how to persevere and fight even during the toughest of times. We are heartbroken and he will be dearly missed.
Mobile Mayor Sandy Stimpson made this statement:
I am deeply saddened to hear about the passing of my friend and colleague, City Council President Levon Manzie. Being grounded in his faith, Reverend Manzie was driven to be a peacemaker. While his focus was serving his constituents, his heart was for moving the entire City of Mobile forward. It was Levon’s childhood dream to be a city councilman in his hometown – a dream he fulfilled as a truly dedicated public servant for the city he dearly loved.
Jean and I join the entire city in mourning the loss of a great servant leader. Our thoughts and prayers are with Levon’s family, friends and his fellow city council members. He leaves behind a legacy as a man of faith and a compassionate unifier who made a positive impact on our entire community.
The Manzie family released this statement:
The Manzie Family is truly devastated by the loss of our beloved son and brother, Councilman Levon Charles Manzie. Our hearts are heavy and deeply saddened. The family, his St. Joseph Baptist Church Family, along with the City of Mobile were truly blessed by his wealth of knowledge and concern for the citizens of Mobile. We know his love for people will be his everlasting legacy. Levon’s spiritual and political service will not be forgotten. He was truly a living servant of the people.
We feel Levon was taken from us too soon, but his work and accomplishments will continue to make a tremendous mark on the City of Mobile. We thank everyone for their sincere thoughts and prayers during our time of loss.
Council members released the following statements:
Council Vice-President C.J. Small, District 3: “President Manzie, a man after God’s on heart, was the epitome of servant leadership. My brother will be greatly missed. My warmest regards are extended to his family and his district. Please keep them in your prayers.”
Fred Richardson, District 1: “This morning we mourn the passing of our colleague, Council President Levon C. Manzie. Levon was an ardent advocate for his District and our City and he will be sorely missed. I extend my deepest condolences to his family, friends, and all the citizens of District 2 as well as the St. Joseph’s Missionary Baptist Church family.”
John Williams, District 4: “Levon Charles Manzie was a kind and gentle statesman. I will forever recall his never failing greeting of “Hello John Charles” to which I‘d respond “Hello Levon Charles”—leaving both of us smiling. No doubt, OUR Council President left the citizens our city a great example of how to live as a true civil servant. Farewell my friend.”
Joel Daves, District 5: “Levon Manzie and I were elected to the City Council at the same time and over the years we worked together, I developed tremendous respect for him. Although he experienced significant health challenges, he never let those challenges impair his attitude or willingness to work hard for his constituents. His loss is a great loss not only for the residents of District 2, but for all the citizens of Mobile.”
Bess Rich, District 6: “I’ve known Levon since he served on the Youth Council for the City of Mobile. His interest, knowledge and understanding of the needs of his constituents were paramount in his representation as a councilperson. Levon made a huge difference and touched numerous people in his lifetime. He will be long remembered and greatly missed by everyone who had the pleasure of working with him and knowing him. May his memory be for a blessing.”
Gina Gregory, District 7: “I’m heart broken by the news of my friend and colleague Levon Manzie’s death. Levon and I have shared a close working relationship over the years. Levon has been a true servant leader for his district and our City. His passion, vision and get the job done attitude will be greatly missed. Levon was always smiling and had an infectious laugh and positive attitude that made everyone feel good.”
Manzie was first elected to represent District 2 in 2013. He was reelected in 2017 facing no opposition and was unanimously selected by his colleagues for the position of vice president.
While under his leadership, District 2 continues to undergo a major renaissance, states a news release Monday from the City of Mobile.
The news release trumpets key initiatives by Manzie to revitalize parks and recreation centers, rebuild and replace dangerous sidewalks in both neighborhoods and the Downtown Entertainment District, has directed considerable funds towards road resurfacing and drainage projects and worked to combat blight.
While focused on the future of District 2, Manzie was also dedicated to preserving its historic past – from honoring local community leaders to ensuring historic communities are properly recognized for generations to come, the news release states.