By Wanda M. Brown, Inglewood City Treasurer
Parks and Commissioner Willie Agee transitioned on April 27th. I will certainly miss my cousin whom I had many conversations with as well as occasional visits to his home. The annual Doby & Agee Family Reunion was held at my home a few years ago. He had a terrific time! We all did! Over 80 family and friends attended. He had been a long haul truck driver for over 30 years after settling here from Alabama. He traveled to Alabama at least once yearly. He owned timber acreage there.
He had lived in the Inglewood for over 52 years and consistently attended city council meetings and many city events. Willie truly loved the City of Inglewood! He was chairman of Parks and Recreation under the offices of both Mayors Dorn and Butts. When he rose to speak during the public time to speak, he always began his speech with, “My name is Willie Agree and I live in the beautiful city of Inglewood!” He would then speak in support of a particular agenda item that was of interest to him. Then again, if prior speakers made comments during their time to speak that he was not in agreement with, he would definitely let it be known! He didn’t pull his punches.
Willie took his appointment of Parks Commissioner very seriously. He was determined to make Inglewood parks first rate! He worked very hard to improve all of the our parks, and often thanked the staff for their support. He was particularly very proud of the Inglewood Play House being renamed in his honor, the Willie Agee Playhouse. As a matter of fact he said to me, Wanda, “I am going to leave money in my Will to handle some of the upkeep of the playhouse.” I attended a play with him on occasion. He was so proud of the playhouse!
I am so thankful that I was able to attend the luncheon celebrating his 90th birthday several months ago. The event was organized by Alisha Smith, Deputy to councilman George Dotson. He was very fond of Alisha. About 17 family and friends of Willie’s attended the event. Congresswoman Maxine Waters sponsored the luncheon and presented him with a beautiful bouquet of flowers. Willie could hardly contained himself he was so happy!
Willie was particularly proud of the NFL stadium complex and was looking forward to the grand opening. He often spoke about it. I spoke to him about a week before he went into the VA hospital. We joked and laughed. He sounded so strong! We talked about his recovery! I had no idea that would be the last time I would be privileged to speak with my cousin. We had some good times. I thank God for that! He knew our Lord, so I know I will see him again!