African American Coalition member killed in auto crash

By: Eric Czarnik | Sterling Heights Sentry | Published February 19, 2021

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STERLING HEIGHTS — Sterling Heights residents and officials are mourning the death of an inaugural member of the city’s African American Coalition after he died in an auto accident.

A GoFundMe page, which the city of Sterling Heights’ social media linked to, is raising funds for family bills and Dwayne Harrison’s funeral. According to the fundraising page, Harrison died after a drunken driver crashed into his vehicle during the afternoon of Jan. 30.

Harrison was 31. He is reportedly survived by his wife, Mariah, two young children, and his wife’s unborn baby, who is due this summer.

“Dwayne was an incredibly loving family man,” the page states. “He was a dreamer who always had the biggest grin on his face, with a passion for life. Anyone who knew him knew that he always put his children and family first.”

The page added that Harrison liked video games, dogs and telling jokes.

“Even after many challenges, Dwayne never gave up,” the page states. “He enrolled in college and proudly graduated in 2019. Dwayne was such an intelligent, compassionate and humorous person that will always be loved and missed.”

Harrison was a Sterling Heights resident and a member of the Sterling Heights African American Coalition, which formed in 2020.

John Myers, another member of the Sterling Heights African American Coalition, said in an emailed statement that Harrison’s attendance at every group meeting showed his commitment to “making sure Sterling Heights is a place where African American residents have the benefit of inclusion and equity at all levels.”

“But Dwayne didn’t just attend the meetings. He was an active participant in discussions surrounding diversity, equity and inclusion and served as part of a Coalition focus group centered around community policing and building trust between the Police Department and the city’s nearly 10,000 Black residents,” Myers said.

“His candor was really invaluable in tackling some tough issues, and he helped make other group members feel comfortable in sharing their thoughts and opinions, as well. I know we are all going to miss his determination, honesty and thoughtfulness.”

In a statement, Sterling Heights Mayor Michael Taylor said he was saddened by Harrison’s death.

“Dwayne was a strong advocate for unity and community reform, and his death is a profound loss for this group,” Taylor said.

Find out more about Harrison’s GoFundMe page by visiting bit.ly/2Z0s1MO.

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