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Father of Councilman Parks dies

October 28, 2008|Jean Merl | Merl is a Times staff writer.

Los Angeles Councilman Bernard C. Parks, locked in a race for Los Angeles County supervisor, canceled his campaign schedule Monday upon the death of his father, Earl Winfred Parks, whose public-service career spanned half a century.

Earl Parks, 87, died in a local hospital Monday morning after years of declining health, Bernard Parks said. The elder Parks served with the Los Angeles Port Police for 38 years and saw his son rise through the ranks of the Los Angeles Police Department to become its chief.

"He never suggested I follow his footsteps into law enforcement, but he was very proud and pleased," Bernard Parks said Monday evening.

Born March 15, 1921, in Oklahoma, Earl Parks grew up in Watts and, in addition to the port police, worked for then-Atty. Gen. Evelle Younger and held posts in other city departments.

Besides his son, immediate survivors include his former wife, Gertrude M. Parks, son Arthur Parks and daughters Agnes Talley and Cleo Ingram.

State Sen. Mark Ridley-Thomas, Parks' opponent in next week's election to succeed Yvonne B. Burke in the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors' 2nd District, issued a statement Monday expressing his condolences.

Services are pending.


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