Remembering Booker T. Scruggs

Booker T Scruggs meant a lot to the Chattanooga community.
He passed away Monday.
A talented musician, civil rights protester and television personality…
He especially dedicated his time mentoring the youth, Helping young students of low-income families achieve higher education.

Mr. Scruggs lead a very, colorful life.
And one of those as U-T-C’s Director of ‘Upward Bound’ and a professor of Sociology.
We spoke with those who’ve been directly impacted by him.

They were neighbors and their kids grew up together in the 70’s.

William Price bonded with Booker Scruggs through music and his work at ‘Upward Bound.’
The organization that Scruggs headed for underprivileged kids at UTC.
Price says through that he was able to travel on class trips to Niagara Falls and New York.

“To me it was an enjoyment, because it’s places I had not been.”

Scruggs was not only a mentor to the youth, but to his colleagues as well.

UTC Director of Communications Nicole Brown tells us, “he gave me all kinds of tips and he didn’t think I was paying attention to all of them, but I was actually listening. He got me into TV and I enjoyed it. It was a volunteer gig.”

Kinnawa Kaitibi is a former student and President of a fraternity Scruggs started decades ago at UTC.

“He told me, it’s always going to be hard for us young brothers and for you to be a young brother pushing forward and actually participating in succeeding; that’s one of the happiest things.”

A Howard high school classmate of 1960, remembers their time at UTC together.

ROLAND CARTER, UTC PROFESSOR EMERITUS AMERICAN MUSIC – “We were from Chattanooga and we were able to come back and to work at an institution that we could not go to and if we left Chattanooga and graduated from high school in 1960; but to come back and be Directors of programs and Chairs of department is a significant part of our lives.”

Booker was the producer and host of WDEF’s ‘Point of View’ for 41 years.

Hundreds flocked to his Facebook page, posting messages, expressing their grief.
Funeral arrangements have not been released as of now.

Categories: Chattanooga, Local News

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