The Grambling family mourns the loss of Rev. Willie Howard

Staff report Homegoing services was held for Rev. Howard Johnson Sunday, July 8 at the Miracle Temple Church of God in Christ in Ruston.
Many remembered Rev. Howard with pride and gladness.
“It has been a privilege to have known and worked with Rev. Willie Howard since 1993,” said Dr. V. T. Samuel, retired dean and professor of the School of Social Work.
Dr. Samuel said Rev. Howard was an undergraduate sociology/psychology major in the early 1990s at GSU and an active participant in Grambling’s Social Research Club. As a mature student, he performed exceedingly well inside and outside of the classroom.
Rev. Howard made the presentation on the first phase of this longevity project based on interviews with elderly in Louisiana. The first interview was with the late centenarian, Arthur “Bo” Carter. Immediately after the presentation in Portland he was promised scholarships and fellowships, said Samuel. He continued with the project and the findings on religion as a major ingredient of longevity was presented at several regional, national, and international conferences.
“He was a man of substance in his articulation. I have had the privilege of associating with him in class, in the research interviews, on the podium in several conferences and workshops. His radiant personality, demeanor, prayers and messages drew the attention of any audience,” said Samuel.
“Being the first president of the Social Research club was a great honor. It was a role that has helped to shape me into the person that I am today,” said Mark A. Smith.
“Mr. Howard’s contributions have turned the Longeviity project into the Living Longevity project. His participation helped our students to bridge the gap and serve as a roadmap for getting to longevity in life. Speaking for the many participants of the project under the guidance of Dr. Frances Staten, we were truly blessed to have had him as part of our lives,” expressed Smith, Social Research Club 93 -94 president.