Ed Poindexter Joined the Ancestors on Dec. 7, 2023

The Memorial-Wake for Ed Poindexter
Thursday December 14th at 2:00 pm at the
Good Shepherd Funeral Home, 3809 North 90 St. in Omaha NE

Memorial Part 1: https://youtu.be/aTW3wjrsjak?si=QH6f9b7KyTHWei-E

This is about an hour of music playing to honor Ed while people gathered. Ed was a musician and had a radio program that he produced from prison. He also formed a band! YouTube reports that this video is partially blocked due to copyrighted music.

Memorial Part 2: https://youtu.be/DR4GJ3vcKr0?si=MeXx1PKIqttN_xgF

This is the service at Good Shepherd Funeral Home in Omaha, Nebraska with family, friends and comrades speaking about Ed Poindexter's life of love and service to the people.

Slideshow: https://youtu.be/C5lfqdNDDqU?si=ucNf_HntDogkfG9a

Wonderful slideshow with pictures of Ed with family and friends over the years, highlighting his sound studio inside prison, where he broadcast a radio show.

The Church Homegoing Service for Ed Poindexter
Friday, December 15th at 10 am, at
Salem Baptist Church, 3131 Lake Street, Omaha NE

Funeral: https://youtu.be/XG3LSLtTmo4?si=N_XpquKFnztHeE9n

Beautiful eulogies memorializing Ed at this service!

Watch the moving video of Ed's Niece and Sister at the April 26, 2023
UN EMLER Hearing in Atlanta: https://youtu.be/aKwV7LQ5iww

You can watch Ed speaking about himself some years ago thanks to
Sister Tekla, who was able to interview Ed and Mondo:

Revolutionary Leadership: The Life of Baba Edward Allen Poindexter
Official Statement of the National Office of the Black Power Archive Collective

Read this powerful, moving history of Ed below

You can read more about Ed Poindexter at


Revolutionary Leadership:
The Life of Baba Edward Allen Poindexter

Official Statement of the National Office of the Black Power Archive Collective

For decades, it has been common knowledge in the African American Community and among our allies that Ed Poindexter and his co-defendant were arrested in a nationwide FBI orchestrated clandestine illicit dragnet Counterintelligence Program dubbed “COINTELPRO”). The stream of propaganda and condemnation from the Omaha Federation of Police that “they got their men” rings as the worst kind of hypocrisy in our ears, for our community has always sensed that the capture and incarceration of the Omaha Two was part of a wider mission by the State of Nebraska—that of suppressing Black resistance to white supremacy. This week, as we eulogize our beloved comrade, Baba (father of the people) Ed Poindexter, we look back over our brother and comrade’s life and find, in direct contradiction to the claims of the state, the truth. Ed is a man whose love for the people had no bounds; he lived out his philosophy of struggle, which would require a spirit of relentless love and sacrifice, of which he was a living example and a constant practitioner. Yes, we saw the holes in the state’s narrative … from the beginning.

Edward Allen Poindexter was born on November 1, 1944 in Omaha, Nebraska. He attended St. Benedict, the Moore Catholic School in North Omaha. Ed graduated from high school and immediately thereafter joined the United States Army. Like many of our veterans who served in the Vietnam War in the mid-1960’s, Ed experienced racism on the base, but was also exposed to a new non-segregated freedom abroad. Like many young adults, Ed saw access to drugs in the military, but he realized that they were a trap set to destroy people. When he left the service, at the age of about 23, Ed got a job in a post office in Atlanta, GA. A brief time later he was to learn, from family members, about the emergence of a chapter of the Black Panther Party in Omaha. Ed was interested and returned to his hometown.

Almost immediately after arriving in Omaha, Ed joined the Board of the Northside YMCA as an anti-drug leader. He would continue to lead young African Americans away from drugs as a part of his life’s work. By 1968, Ed had run into, as he said, “a cat” named David Lewis Rice (later “Mondo” in 1983). He mistook him for someone else, and David cleared that up with a laugh “well I ain’t him.” The two intellectuals became fast friends and comrades.

Around the nation, heavy infiltration of Black Panther Party chapters by the F.B.I. led to the shutdown of nearly all of them, including the one in Omaha in 1968. Ed and David decided to restart the chapter in early 1969, but would not adopt its use of Black power aesthetics like the black leather jacket, the beret, or the bandolier. The young Panthers instead magnified The Party’s theoretical aspects of how to win liberation for Black People, and thephilosophy expressed through the Ten Point Program.

Ed and Mondo could relate to every aspect of The National B.P.P. Platform, penned by Huey P. Newton and Bobby Seale in Oakland. It called for the fulfillment of rights due Black people who were an internal colony in the United States. “We Demand” the right to determine our own destiny, to employment, to decent housing, to true education about the society that we live in, to exemption from military service (given the government’s practice at of attacking Black and Brown nations who seek independence from colonialism). The Platform also called for an end to the economic robbery, the right to a trial by a jury of OUR peers, and“land, bread, housing, education, clothing, justice and peace,” in short everything that the human spirit and peoples everywhere have a right too.

However, after multiple police killings of unarmed Black youth in Omaha, Ed and Mondo embraced the final platform (“to end police brutality and murder of Black people”). It was defiance against lynching by agents of the state, which would set the local Omaha Chapter of the Black Panther Party into a spiraling clandestine vortex with the local and federal police.

From the widest vantage point, this struggle was hundreds of years old. From the days of African American enslavement, sharecropping, and Jim Crow, whites killed Black with impunity. When they killed black people, police had airtight alibis by virtue of their badges. Meanwhile, Ed and Mondo, like their counterparts in Oakland and elsewhere, fought hard for liberation, holding political education classes, selling the Party newspaper, demanding and teaching discipline and African and African American history, and organizing police patrols. Mondo and Ed personally followed police as they stopped people in North Omaha, taking down badge and patrol car numbers and yelling out to community members their legal rights. Ed once said that an unexpected consequence of their patrols was a one-sided quasi war with police, in which officers shot at Mondo and Ed if they saw them alone at night. The effect of the Leadership of the Omaha Two, from the food programs for Black children, to the police patrols, and Black history classes, was that the People loved Ed and Mondo and accepted the Omaha B.P.P. Chapter (under its various names, including “United Front Against Fascism”, and “the National Committee to Combat Fascism”).

Despite their best efforts to thwart violent police officers, the police killings of unarmed Black people in Omaha continued (Eugene Nesbitt in 1966, Howard Stevenson in 1968, and Vivian Strong in 1969). The death of 14-year-old Vivian Strong was a kind of last straw for the Black Community of Omaha. Uprisings came and fires, although eventually extinguished by the fire department—still smolder in people’s hearts. Speeches were delivered, by these two young revolutionaries along with Ernie Chambers (later Senator Chambers), who redoubled their commitment to give their lives, if necessary, to the people. Even the reluctant Black Middle Class now joined the working class in condemning the police killings of Black youth.

Brilliant strategists, Mondo and Ed wondered whether the American system could work for Black People. Their next step, one meant to assess the racist system, caught the attention of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, who responded with rage. The Omaha Panthers had gotten themselves elected as delegates to the Democratic National Convention. F.B.I. files later revealed that Hoover could not believe that his agents had allowed this to happen and thundered that this act would legitimize the Party in the eyes of the people and must not be allowed. A grand jury was set in motion. The Two were questioned: “What did they mean by naming their school the Vivian Strong Liberation School?” Ernie Chambers was brought in and refused to speak against the men … he refused to speak at all.

More traps were set. Soon after being pressured to sign false statements by police (statements later used as an excuse to raid and ransack the Panther Headquarters), thirteen-year-old Mary Alice Clark went missing, never to be found. Mrs. Bertha Calloway, founder of the Negro History Society (later renamed the Great Plains Black History Museum), organized a petition to free the men; she garnered hundreds of signatures attesting to their character and that they were innocent. A booby trap bomb was put on a porch at 2867 Ohio Street on August 17, 1970; Officer Larry Minard was killed, and more than twenty people were arrested. Three men, whose names we know, but will not share here, were arrested, and charged with dynamite possession. The state would later suppress the copy of the 911 call (luring the office to his death). Hoover wrote that the prosecution must not share a copy of the 911 tape with Ed and Mondo’s defense attorneys as it “might be prejudicial to the trials.” The other men, those who were found to be in possession the dynamite, were let go. Two brothers gave forced confessions. Donald Peak, a petty street slickster turned police informant, agreed to their narrative, and his younger Brother Duane, who was 15, was forced to sign the confession given/agreed to by Donald. Duane was soon whisked to Juvi, and then into witness protection. It did not matter to the state that both Ed and Mondo had alibis (both were with their female partners that night and were not at nor near the bombing site on Ohio Street on August the 17, 1970). Mondo at age 24, and Ed at 25 were arrested and charged with conspiracy to commit murder. Rice’s home was cordoned off and boxes were carried in, according to one of Rice’s younger brothers who tried to return home from an outing and witnessed the staging of boxes in the basement by police, which would later be recognized as explosives. Being the one with military service, Ed was the logical one to accuse of instructing the teenager on how to make a bomb. On the stand at the Preliminary Hearing the boy (Duane Peak) said that “it was all a lie”, that neither Ed nor Mondo were involved. Senator Chambers, who attended the hearing, recounted later how a recess was called and that when the boy, Peak, returned to the witness stand he looked “as if he had been crying and as if he had been roughed up”. Peak then agreed with what the state demanded. Hoover had his way. The FBI overlord gleefully wrote in a memo to his agents that “use of teenagers in FBI COINTELPRO operations in Omaha has been so successful that it should be applied in other cities.” The all-white jury convicted, and in April of 1971, Ed and Mondo were transported to the Nebraska State Penitentiary in Lincoln.

In 1977, a piece to that national puzzle of why so many Black Panther Party members had been jailed or killed was exposed by an investigation of COINTELPRO by the Frank Church Committee in Congress—which declared the secret activities against Black and Brown liberation organizations as illegal and outside of the bounds of legitimate government work in a functioning democracy. In 1980 Mondo and Ed fought for and won access to their FBI files through the Freedom of Information Act. Now the FBI’s misconduct, the police intimidations, and the false evidence helped to explain the government’s goal in the case of the “Omaha Two.” The picture was complete, the lie, the plan of attack by FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, funded by the federal government, to “neutralize” and wipe out the Black Panther Party, had become a reality in Omaha.

As soon as they hit the prison gates, Baba Ed and Baba Mondo formed the Harambee African Culture Organization, and went right to work, the same work that had been doing in the community outside, teaching and organizing Black people. They would run this organization for over 45 years. An intellectual always learning, Ed transferred to Minnesota, because it had a college program, and he earned a bachelor’s degree and took coursework for a master’s degree. Ed wrote an anti-gang and anti-drug program and taught this curriculum through the Minnesota prison system, although he was a prisoner himself. Ed wrote a Self-Esteem and Self-Help manual for African American teens, as well as a play and other materials. He founded a publishing company and gave talks about the harm to our minds of bodies of illicit drugs.

Ed and Mondo both sought Post-Conviction Relief. In 1972 they appealed their convictions to the state Supreme Court of Appeals. In 1974-5, a Federal District Court ruled that the search of Mondo’s home had been unconstitutional. The 8th Circuit Court upheld the finding. To their supporters’ dismay and that of their families, when their Case reached the US Supreme Court the (unjust) justices refused to hear the case on its merits, remanding it back to state court. Their defense committees stayed in the trenches, following the directions of Baba Ed and Baba Mondo, and trying every conceivable path to win the men’s freedom. In 1990, Amnesty International visited Ed and Mondo in Prison and examined the history of their case. The NGO said that the case was horribly unfair and demanded a retrial. In 1993, for Mondo and 1994, for Ed the Nebraska Parole Board agreed to commute the men’s sentences to a specific number of years (required for them to be eligible for Parole), But the politicalNebraska Pardons Board—comprised of the Governor, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of State, refused.

In 1989-91, the Omaha and Lincoln Defense Committees, under the leadership of Leola Bullock, Vickey Parks, and with scores of activists on the ground (*including many of you) Mondo and Ed’s attorneys, led by National Political Prisoner attorney Lennox Hinds, and Nebraska Senator Ernie Chambers, went to Spokane, Washington to get a voice sample from the now grown man, Duane Peak (who was living under an assumed name “Gabriel”). Tom Owen, a voice expert, conducted a voice analysis and found definitively that Duane Peak’s voice was not that of the voice on the 911 call. The trial had been a sham. The boy had perjured himself under pressure from the state. And still there was no relief for the COINTELPRO victims Mondo and Ed. There would be no retrial according to the prevailing theory, because the new evidence would not change the other “evidence”: a wire, which the FBI claimed to have found in Mondo’s home, a substance which was the equivalent to that of a matchbook used to light a cigarette, and significantly, the writings about police in the Black Panther Party newspaper.

In 1998, the Lincoln Justice Committee and the newly appointed regional Jericho leadership Agbala Ali (yours truly) sent Diane Myers to Washington DC to participate on behalf of Mondo and Ed in the first ever Jericho March for freedom for US political prisoners. By 2000, after a struggle, the Omaha and Lincoln Defense Committees were combined into the Nebraskans for Justice. A new leader was recruited, (then the head of the Midwest Guardians, the Black Fraternity of Police) Tariq Al Amin. Ed had by now returned to Nebraska and was reunited in comradeship with Mondo, and the “Omaha Two” resumed working together, training the younger men in the prison to develop consciousness and running cultural programming. Outside of the walls, rallies were held to “Free Ed and Mondo”, inside the men wrote and published, providing intellectual, revolutionary and cultural leadership to the Black communities of the west, their ideas and guidance emanating out from behind the wall for decades.

By 2015, prison conditions took their toll and Mondo fell ill, passing on March 13, 2016, leaving Ed and all of us reeling in the absence of the jubilant, humorous, and bright star. Ed, like Mondo, increasingly feared for his family and those that might visit, as the state gradually withdrew art and other programs from prisoners, tapped the phone lines, and, they thought, the visiting room. That year Ed had triple bypass heart surgery, would later be diagnosed with kidney trouble, and put on regular dialysis, which made him ill. By 2020, Ed’s eyesight was nearly gone in one eye, and by 2022, Ed could not hear well without a device. In the spring of 2023, the family discovered that one of Ed’s lower legs had been amputated without their knowledge. Now he could not ambulate, even to go to the restroom. The prison said that Ed was too unsteady on his feet to be safely fitted a prothesis.

Both men’s most stalwart supporters were their mothers: Mrs. Virginia Rivers, Ed’s mother, and Mrs. Vera Rice, Mondo’s mother, had each preceded her son in death. Ed’s entire remaining family, Brother David (and wife Linda), Sister Adrian, Niece Ericka, (and many others) along with their defense committees including the National Jericho Movement, Nebraskans for Justice, and for a time Nebraskans for Peace and the local NAACP’s of Lincoln and Omaha, and their attorneys: Bob Bartle, Beth Hamilton, John C. Vanderslice, (for Ed) and Father William Cunningham, John Stevens Berry, and Tim Ashford (for both men) and a host of supporters including: Senator Ernie Chambers, the late Charles Parks, Vickey Parks, Eliga Ali, John Else, Anne Else, Tariq Al Amin, the late Baba Marshall Taylor (African American Bookstore) journalist Kietryn Zychal who visited Ed often, Agbala Ali, Paul Allen, Ben Gray, Mary Dickenson, Efia Nwangaza, Jihad Abdulmumit, Anne Lamb, Paulette Dauteuil and hundreds of others worked over these long years in hopes of getting relief for the men. This effort was still underway when Ed transitioned to the ancestors on December 7, 2023. Ed, the final comrade of the Omaha Two has fallen. Sadly, both men fulfilled their pledged to give their lives to protect the people. In his final hours, Ed received surprise visits. Covered with kisses and love from his younger sister Adrian (Poindexter) Payne, and his loving and adored niece Ericka “Rikki” Payne. He would join the ancestors later that evening, finally, after 53years, leaving the prisons of his captors.

Baba Ed Poindexter, Presente! As you journey to the homeland of us all, take with you the certainty that we see you! We are not confused by their hate-filled anti-blackness, nor their criminalizing propaganda, nor were we ever. We know you as you truly were and are…a revolutionary, innocent of all charges. Baba, you showed us how a true warrior lives, caring for the lives of the people and sacrificing your own. We honor you. We Salute You in Full Gratitude! All Power to the People!

Tekla “Agabala” Ali: Acting Secretary BPAC 2021-present, Former National Co-Chair Jericho 2014-15, Former Regional Chair of Jericho-for the Midwest Region 1999-2003, Founding Member Nebraska for Justice 2000, Former Member the Omaha Defense Committee for the Omaha Two 1987-1996, Former Member the Lincoln Justice Committee 1988-1996, Former Member the Calvin Memorial Legal Justice Committee 1984-1987. tekla.johnson@eagles.usm.edu. With Eliga Malik Alison

NYC Jericho Movement, P.O. Box 670927, Bronx, NY 10467