Community pays tribute to Rev. Cecil ‘Chip’ Murray, famed pastor at First AME who died at 94


LOS ANGELES (KABC) — The Los Angeles community paid tribute Sunday to Rev. Cecil “Chip” Murray, the revered pastor who died on Saturday at age 94.

Murray was renowned for his dedication to building up his community and in particular gained national attention while serving as a calming presence during the 1992 Los Angeles riots after the Rodney King trial verdict.

Local officials, including Mayor Karen Bass and Rep. Adam Schiff, joined worshippers and community members at First African Methodist Episcopal in West Adams to pay tribute to Murray.

“Rev. Cecil Chip Murray was the most amazing minister, reverend anyone could ever know,” said parishioner Regina Wilson. “A man of God. He loved God, he loved everyone. He made you feel like you know him, even if you didn’t.”

Murray was respected for delivering powerful sermons that helped FAME – the city’s oldest Black church – grow from just 250 parishioners to more than 18,000 during his 27 years as a pastor.

“His legacy is not only here within this church, but the touch that he made upon the world,” said Rev. Robert Ryland Shaw II, a senior pastor at First AME. “He was often quoted saying from the song, if I can help somebody as I travel along then my living will not be in vain.”

Cecil Murray, First AME pastor who calmed LA after ’92 riots, dies at 94

The Rev. Cecil L. “Chip” Murray, who served as pastor of First African Methodist Episcopal Church for 27 years and was noted for his calming presence during the 1992 Los Angeles riots, has died at age 94.

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