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Outstanding alumnus remembered

There will be a double funeral service for Fred Douglas Hearn Jr., a Grambling State Alumnus, who passed away in Chicago. The Louisiana service will be held Tuesday, March 17 at the Pleasant Grove Missionary Baptist Church on Evergreen Road in Jonesboro.

The Chicago visitation will be Friday, March 13 from 7 p.m. until 9 p.m. and a wake on Saturday, March 14 from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. with services from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. at New Progressive Missionary Baptist Church located at 9425 S. Perry Ave. Chicago.

Mr. Hearn was born August 28, 1943 to the late Fred and Owena Hearn of Jonesboro.

He was married to Barbara Lester Hearn for 46 years. They had one son and two grandchildren. Fred was a dedicated loving husband, father, brother, grandfather and god-father.

He was educated in the Jackson Parish School System.

After graduating from Jackson High School in 1961, he attended GSU where he received a bachelor of science degree in industrial arts in 1965.

Fred moved to Chicago where he became an Industrial Arts teacher with Chicago Public Schools. He worked there for 35 years.  As a teacher for CPS, he was a member of the Chicago Teacher’s Union from 1966 until he retired.

Fred received a masters of arts degree in 1975 from Governor’s State University in urban teacher education.

In 1979 he received a masters of arts in the School of Psychology and in 1983, he received his masters degree in education from Governor’s State University.

Hearn received numerous awards from his church, New Progressive Missionary Baptist Church. He was also recognized and received accolades from Grambling State University and Grambling University National Alumnin Association.

At an early age, he accepted Christ and was baptized at Pleasant Grove Baptist Church of Jonesboro, where his early Christian Education Training started by attending Sunday School, B.T.U. (Baptist Training Union) and singing in the church choir.

Upon moving to Chicago, he became a member of the New Progressive Missionary Baptist Church where he was devoted and committed to his God and his church.

He served on the usher board, was a Sunday school teacher and served as Superintendent from 1970 to 2006, over 35. years. He also was an active member of the Church’s Board of Trustees from 2006 until his passing.

Out of his love for mankind (people), especially children and the elderly, he envisioned an Up Building Community Program. He was permitted to organize and develop a Community Out Reach Rally.

He became the Director of the New Progressive Neighborhood Out Reach Rally from 2006 until his death. The Out Reach provides a health fair, a clothes-give-away, free haircuts, free meals, free school supplies, wholesome games and great fun. The church’s goal is to have a relationship with the community and to encourage the unsaved to come to Christ.

Hearn worked diligently with his pastor in many capacities of the church. The most rewarding was assisting in the construction of the new edifice. 

In 1967, Hearn, along with other alumni, organized the first alumni chapter called The Windy City Chapter of GSU and he became a charter member in 1968.

He served as Chapter President from 1981 to 1986, serving as business manager from 1986 until death, served as chairperson of the National Alumni Conventions held in Chicago, in 1992 and 2007.

He was a delegate as well as a representative for the Windy City Chapter at the National Alumni Conventions 1970 – 2011.

Hearn was the founder and director of the National Alumni, GSU Golf Classic Tournament, which is now in its 8th year (from 2006 to his passing). His envisioned goal was to give student scholarships and to enjoy added homecoming activities.

Hearn was a true Gramblinite who proudly wore his black and gold. He dedicated his time, energy and expertise to GSU and the GUNAA. Loving his alma mater and having a strong will to support, he gave liberally financially.

Fred served in every capacity of the alumni and took every opportunity to enhance the motto: Grambling is the Place Where Everybody is Somebody