Howard D. Anderson

Published 9:55 pm Friday, October 31, 2014

Howard D. Anderson

October 23, 2014

Howard D. Anderson was born in Lumpkin, Ga. on Feb. 28, 1936, to James Monroe Anderson and Lila Glenn Anderson.

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At an early age, Howard developed a love of reading that would continue throughout his life. It wasn’t unusual to see Howard surrounded by numerous and eclectic books, newspapers and magazines. He believed in knowledge and information, which was reflected in his grades at Hutto High School in Bainbridge, Ga. His keen interest in politics prompted him to major in political science as he earned a bachelor’s degree from Morehouse College in Atlanta, Ga. in 1968. He also attended the University of Iowa School of Law for a year.

After graduation from Morehouse, Howard was a reporter for the Atlanta Bureau of the Associated Press before becoming a sales representative for Merck, Sharpe & Dohme, where he managed a territory on the Southside of Chicago. Following a stint as a staff writer in the Office of Public Information at the University of Chicago, in 1971 he became one of the founders of the Sickle Cell Disease Association of Illinois, formerly the Midwest Association for Sickle Cell Anemia, and served as its first chairman. He was appointed president of the organization a year later.

Always civic minded, Howard was one of the founders of the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, and served as the organization’s second vice-chairman, third vice-chairman, treasurer and board secretary during a 12-year period. In addition, he was a founder and secretary of Community Health Charities of Illinois, formerly the Combined Health Appeal of Illinois, and was a founding member of the Community Health Charities of America.

Howard also was past chairman of the Illinois Committee for the Combined Federal Campaign for the National Health Agencies. He was a former member of the Board of the Chicago Regional Blood Program and of the Advisory Councils of the University of Chicago Comprehensive Sickle Cell Center and the University of Illinois Comprehensive Sickle Cell Center.

Howard was the recipient of many awards, including those from the Chicago Urban League, Apostolic Church of God, Chicago Regional Blood Program, Fred Hampton Scholarship Fund, Black Woman’s Hall of Fame Foundation, Michael Reese Hospital and the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America.

Howard was passionate about music. He loved all types of music, but was especially fond of jazz. It has been said that had it not been for Howard single-handedly keeping Tower Records in business, it would have closed much sooner.

He was equally enthusiastic about baseball and adopted the New York Mets as his team. His support of the Mets began in 1962 when he lived in New York City at the time the Mets were founded to replace the departing New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers. After they retired, Howard and Susan enjoyed many days literally on the road following the New York Mets as they faced opponent after opponent.

Howard was a calm, even-tempered man who enjoyed quiet pursuits at home—reading, listening to music and watching baseball. He had a very dry and wicked sense of humor, but you had to listen closely and carefully because that too was quiet.

Howard is survived by his wife of 39 years, Susan; his son Howard Jr. from a previous marriage; his grandchildren Kira, Melody and Taylor Simpson; his stepchildren Deborah Humphrey and Robert Taylor; and a host of cousins—all of whom he deeply loved and who loved him.

He was preceded in death by his beloved brother, James Roosevelt Anderson.

The Cremation Society of Illinois was in charge of arrangements.