Ronald Lamar Ross (Runoko Rashidi)

16 agosto , 19542 agosto , 2021

Runoko Rashidi was born Ronnie Ross, the sixth of seven children, to Joseph Ross and Pearlie Moore on August 16, 1954 in Stockton, California. He attended Budlong Elementary School and Washington High School in Los Angeles, and graduated from Northridge College. As a child he was highly intelligent and showed signs of potential greatness, and he eventually changed his name to Ronald Lamar.

In the 1970’s, Ronald changed his name to Runoko Rashidi and thereafter dedicated himself to the uplift of Black people. He joined a number of Pan African organizations, engaged in extensive research and began following great Black scholars such as Dr. Yosef Ben Jochannan and Dr. John Henrike Clarke.

Rashidi often stated that around 1975, his life was changed. At that time he read an article in the Black Scholar that focused on the fact that Africans reached the Americas thousands of years before Columbus, and revealed that Africans were the indigenous people of not only Africa but also Europe, Asia, the South Sea Islands, Australia and the New World. This exposure to the antiquity and universal presence of African people launched a 45-year career of research, travel and lectures by Rashidi, and catapulted him into a status of international prominence.

In 1981, Rashidi joined the staff at Compton Community College in Compton, California, and served under Dr. Billie J. Moore, director of the Extended Opportunity Program and Services. She was so impressed by Rashidi’s brilliance and passion that she appointed him program chairman of the African People’s Conference. In that capacity, for years Rashidi organized conferences around various themes focusing on Black people in Africa and the diaspora.

By the late 1980’s Rashidi had developed a reputation as an authority on African history and culture. He began speaking at churches, schools, colleges and universities, first in Southern California, then around the nation and finally around the world.

For over 30 years Rashidi travelled to more than 125 countries. He often conducted study tours of African Americans to a number of countries, especially Egypt, revealing the African origin of civilization. He documented his travels with considerable video footage and photographs, which he presented in thousands of lectures.

Rashidi wrote numerous articles and books. Among the latter are: “My Global Journeys in Search of the African Past,” “Black Star: The African Presence in Early Europe,” “Beautiful, Royal and Divine: The Black Image in Antiquity,” “African Presence in Early Asia,” “African Star Over Asia” and “Uncovering the African Past: The Ivan Van Sertima Years.”

Rashidi was particularly revered in India. Not only did he conduct vast research on the subcontinent and lecture broadly about its people and culture, he also joined with the Dalits in their historic fight against racism and oppression.

At the time of his transition in Egypt, Rashidi was one of the most renowned authorities on Black people in Africa and the diaspora; and had recently embarked on a video series about African history and culture that would have been designed for use on all academic levels.

Runoko Rashidi was preceded in death by both of his parents Pearlie Moore and Joseph Ross, and by four brothers: Robert Rhoden, Steven Rhoden, Clevester Rhoden and Eddie Ross. He is survived by a daughter, Assata Garvey Ross, who lives in Paris, France with her mother, Zawadi Sagna; two sisters, Brenda Miller and Carol Strong, a brother-in-law, Donald Strong, a sister-in-law, Shirley Caldwell Ross, Karen Johnson, girlfriend/partner and a host of nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

A public chapel visitation for Ronald will be held Sunday, August 29, 2021 from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM at the Rose Hills Hall of Grace, 3890 Workman Mill Rd, Whittier, California 90601.

Masks and appropriate social distancing will be required per LA County Health Departments guidelines.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at for the Ross family.


  • Visitation in Chapel

    domingo, 29 agosto , 2021

Ubicación de la tumba

Ronald Lamar Ross (Runoko Rashidi)


Ronald Lamar Ross (Runoko Rashidi)


Patricia Johnson

8 septiembre , 2021

I recall meeting Professor Rashidi when I was a college worker and student at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago. He was visiting colleges in Illinois and educating us on the REAL Black History. I am forever grateful to Professor Rashidi for enlightening me to the history that western society has ignored. Rest in Power my King!

Sirelda Jackson

1 septiembre , 2021

Thank you sooo much Baba Runoko... I'm so happy to have met and talked with you, to study, educate, travel and working to unify our Gobal African Presence through your tireless efforts and work. Rest in Power🙏🏾🤜🏾🤛🏾✊🏾🙏🏾
Your Guardian Angel from Breda, Netherlands

Baba Sr Amen Ra Schmm Khnuu

1 septiembre , 2021

Let the divine spirit of our brother Runoko Rashidi join in the ancestral plain to be among those who will be in the coming whirlwind of Afrikan Redemption. ONE GOD ONE AIM ONE DESTINY

Walter Turner

31 agosto , 2021

Dearest Runoko thank you for carrying us on a journey to self love. You were so gracious with your time and appeared on "Africa Today" on many many occasions throughout the years. We marvel that you made sacrifice after sacrifice to call on African peoples to love ourselves , our communities, and our history. As you talked about all the countries you visited I so much appreciated that these were often lonely journeys, on the road, around the world, working for our liberation. Your spent your dollars and your time for us. There is no way that we can thank you enough my brother. I send blessings to your family and the global African community that benefitted from your work. Ashe my brother a job very well done and appreciated by the ancestors. Much love and we will honor you eternally.

Renee Quarles

30 agosto , 2021

To The Family of Runoko Rashidi, My Name is Renee Quarles of Shades of Afrika, Long Beach, I'm so happy to have a world of memories. I like to Call Him Dr. Runoko Rashidi, He took me around the world as he shared his love of knowledge. I have such faun memories I can still feel his presence.

I wish all the Loved Ones the same Peace as We Like He will one day fall like a Leaf from the same Tree.. What a Blessing to have had him in your life.. Now In Spirit He's Able to Do even More :)

I'm sorry I missed all services it seems, But My Heart is With You.. I will Continue with Pride to Represent his Creations in Writing all Titles are sold here :)

Gloria Jernigan

30 agosto , 2021

Rashidi was very highly respected for his tireless research uncovering the African Presence around the world.
He shaped so many lives with accurate knowledge about who people were in history.
We thank you. We love you.
May the family find some peace knowing he was held in high esteem by many.

Linda Johnson

30 agosto , 2021

My Dear Runoko, when I first heard the news of your sudden & unexpected passing I was devastated, shocked, & saddened. But at the same time it gave me a sense of consolation to know you made your transition in Egypt (a place you "deeply" revered & had visited on many occasions), doing the work you "deeply" loved the most; teaching & sharing your vast wisdom & knowledge with other seekers of understanding & wisdom.
My memories of you are fond: I remember your warmth, your generosity, & kindness. I recall once on a visit to your home in LA, you gifted me with a copy of one of your books: Black Star: the African Presence in Early Europe.
You left the world & especially African people on the continent & throughout the Diaspora a body of history & a wealth of knowledge which will inspire & enlighten us from generation to generation.... forever....
Thank you for your tireless work & dedication... It's because of your research work & those of other great historians (Dr Ben, Dr Clarke, Dr Van Sertima & others) like yourself, we as an African people, can realize, the rich & glorious (but often overlooked) Black Presence throughout the world that has culturally, artistically, historically, intellectually, & spiritually contributed to the elevation & upliftment of the entire world, throughout the planet...
We sincerely honor you...
& Gratefully thank you...
We pray for& bless your wonderful family & thank them for sharing you with us all...
Rest in Peace my Dear Brother
& Beloved Friend...

Brian Anthony Smith

30 agosto , 2021

Dua Duauh, Ntr, Ma'at Hotep!! You have been & will continue to be a Powerful Inspiration & Influence in My Life!! You will be missed Physically, but You will Always be here in Spirit!! One Love, Baba!!
Brian Anthony Smith aka JazzeBeno


30 agosto , 2021

A great man, a true friend, an eloquent and cerebral teacher, the of best traveling companions. How fortunate and blessed we were to have traveled with you. We will TRULY miss you Runoko.

Donna and Bee (Williams sisters)
Memphis, TN

A Stanford

30 agosto , 2021

I am thankful to have had the privilege to listen to and learn from Dr. Rashidi on numerous occasions. Rest In Eternal Paradise.

A. Stanford