The family statement honoring Mutulu’s life and legacy

Dr. Mutulu Shakur, a highly esteemed acupuncturist, healer, revolutionary, and
leader in the Black liberation movement, peacefully passed away on Friday, July
7, 2023 at 72 years old. He courageously battled multiple myeloma, a blood
cancer that damages the bones and kidneys, since 2019. In December 2022, he
was released on parole from federal prison, affording him the opportunity to
spend his remaining days surrounded by loved ones. Having endured nearly 37
years of incarceration, his profound legacy will serve as a timeless inspiration for
future generations.

Born Jeral Wayne Williams on August 8, 1950, in Baltimore, Maryland, Dr.
Mutulu Shakur was raised in Jamaica, Queens, under the loving care of his blind
mother. It was within the struggle of helping his mother navigate an unjust social
service system that his political consciousness awakened. At the tender age of
16, he joined the New Afrikan Independence Movement, and in the late 1960s,
he actively participated in the Revolutionary Action Movement (RAM), a Black
Nationalist group advocating for Black self-determination and socialist change
across the nation.

Driven by his unwavering commitment to the cause, Dr. Mutulu Shakur was a
conscious citizen of the Provisional Government of the Republic of New Afrika.
He was a leader of the Black Liberation Army (BLA), and worked closely with the
Black Panther Party. He was a founding member of the New Afrikan People’s
Organization (NAPO) and Malcolm X Grassroots Movement (MXGM), acting as a
pillar of strength and leadership.

While his revolutionary activism influenced countless lives, Dr. Mutulu Shakur
also made groundbreaking contributions as an acupuncturist, affectionately
known as “Doc.” After receiving training in Canada and China, he obtained his
license in California in 1979. Dr. Mutulu Shakur practiced holistic medicine with
unwavering dedication, working tirelessly to empower his community. His journey
started at Lincoln Detox, an addiction treatment program. The program was
founded in 1970 in the South Bronx, by a coalition that included revolutionary
healthcare workers, the Black Panther Party, the Young Lords and drug-addicted individuals seeking treatment. Dr. Mutulu Shakur served as executive director
and pioneered the use of acupuncture in treating withdrawal symptoms. His
innovative five-point protocol, which remains widely used in addiction treatment
today, brought relief and healing to countless individuals. In the late 1970s, he
co-founded and co-directed the Black Acupuncture Advisory Association of North
America (B.A.A.N.A) and the Harlem Institute of Acupuncture, both established
during a time when acupuncture faced legal challenges in New York. Dr. Mutulu
Shakur’s influential work in acupuncture continues to resonate in clinics and
treatment centers across the globe.

In 1988, Dr. Mutulu Shakur faced a profound legal ordeal. He was convicted for
leading a group of revolutionaries involved in a series of armed robberies in New
York and Connecticut in 1981. The charges were brought against him under the
conspiracy to violate the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO)
Act and included his role in the liberation of fellow activist Assata Shakur from a
New Jersey prison in 1979.

While incarcerated, Dr. Shakur was active in various prison programs and was a
mentor to many within the system. He prepared a lot of young men on how to
handle life in prison and for life after release.

Dr. Shakur was deeply influential in the social and political messaging of his
sons’ creative output. Ever present as a mentor, even while imprisoned, he was
instrumental in developing the Thug Code, which created a framework for the
brothers’ vision to create a social movement with the group THUG LIFE as the

Dr. Mutulu Shakur is survived by his six children – Maurice “Mopreme” Shakur
[Talia], Talib Shakur [Nichole], Ayize Jama-Everett, Sekyiwa “Set” Kai Shakur
[Branden], Nzingha Shakur-Ali, and Chinua Mutulu Shakur. Additionally, he is
fondly remembered by his six grandchildren — Nzingha Afeni Shakur, Malik
Mutulu Shakur, Cheyenne Kai Harding, Tyrone Campbell, Cameron Rahmell
Jackson and Mia Voight, his loving sisters Sharon Howell and Janice Ruth
Williams, his brothers Sekou Odinga and Bilal Sunni-Ali, nieces and nephew —
Nicole Howell, Sharon N. Williams, Tyree N. Williams and Chandra D. Williams-
Phillips, and his godchildren — Aiyisha T. Obafemi, Chaka Zulu, Zayd
Akinshegun Sefu Akinyela, Sulay Majid, Malika Majid, Ayesha Jabbar, Nora
Hasna Majid, and Mohammedeen Majid. His former wife, Makini Shakur, and his
son-in-law, Gregory Jackson (who he named Bahanee Lajah) are also cherished
members of his family. Dr. Shakur was preceded in death by his mother, Dolores
Porter, his revolutionary and spiritual father, Salahdeen (Aba) Shakur, his son,
Tupac Amaru Shakur, godson, Yafeu Fula, his brothers Lumumba Shakur, Zayd
Shakur and Wakil Shakur, his sister Fulani N. Sunni-Ali and his former wife, Afeni
Shakur, a remarkable political activist, philanthropist, and Black Panther.

As we honor the life and legacy of Dr. Mutulu Shakur, let us remember him as a
healer, an unyielding revolutionary, and an advocate for social change. His
contributions as an acupuncturist and his unwavering dedication to the Black
liberation movement will forever inspire generations to come. May his spirit of
resilience and commitment guide us as we strive for a more equitable and just


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