John Gibbons, the primary African American United States Marshal of Massachusetts, has handed away.
A resident of Agawam, Massachusetts, Gibbons was a graduate of American Worldwide Faculty (AIC) and went on to have an illustrious profession in regulation enforcement. He acquired his undergraduate diploma from the establishment in 1977, a Grasp of Schooling in 1986 and was bestowed with an honorary doctorate in 2011. Whereas attending AIC, he was an distinctive soccer participant for the college’s workforce the Yellowjackets and was inducted into their Athletics Corridor of Fame in 2022.
Gibbons served as part of the Massachusetts State Police division for over 4 a long time and have become a extremely revered state trooper within the state. He labored towards causes that promoted the diversification of regulation enforcement to turn out to be a correct illustration of the communities that they’re sworn to guard. In 2009, President Barack Obama— together with a suggestion by the late Senator Edward Kennedy and senior Senator John Kerry—appointed Gibbons to turn out to be a U.S. Marshal for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, which Gibbons thought-about to be his “dream job.” This prestigious appointment led him to turn out to be the primary Black Marshal within the state’s historical past. He formally stepped into the position in 2010.
Gibbons was integral as a member of the Legal professional Common’s Workplace to the FBI Western Massachusetts Gang Job Power. Earlier than retiring, he notably oversaw the seize and trial of mob boss James “Whitey” Bulger in 2012, and in 2015 the trial of Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev.
Outdoors of the magnitude of his profession, Gibbons, member of the Delta Chi Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, was deeply invested within the welfare of his group in Western Massachusetts. He was a founding member of the state’s Nationwide Group of Black Regulation Enforcement Executives (NOBLE). A group servant and man of nice religion, Gibbons was an Elder at Martin Luther King Jr. Group Presbyterian Church in Springfield, Massachusetts, one of many few historic Black church buildings within the metropolis. He additionally mentored many locally and was a task mannequin for youth and adults.
In an announcement, Domenic Sarno, the mayor of Springfield, Massachusetts shared: “To begin with, I’m so very sorry to listen to in regards to the passing of retired U.S. Marshal John Gibbons. My sympathy, ideas, prayers, and encouragement exit to his spouse Shelby, brother Ron, household and associates. I spoke with Marshal Gibbons not too way back to see how he was feeling. At all times the gentleman and a well-respected lawman. After a protracted and profitable profession with our state police, John grew to become a trailblazer, as the primary black U.S. Marshal for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Let’s not additionally, overlook, he was one hell of a soccer participant for American Worldwide Faculty (AIC) too. Marshal Gibbons, John, your legacy of excellent regulation enforcement and compassion will stay on. Might God relaxation your soul my good friend.”
Gibbons is survived by his spouse and son— Shelby and Jonathan—his brother Ron, and a group that was deeply impacted by his life and legacy.
We at EBONY lengthen our prayers and deepest condolences to the household and associates of John Gibbons.