Feb. 1, 2012 Sherman Oaks Los Angeles County California, USA
Television Personality. Fondly remembered as the robust-voiced host and creator of the popular dance-oriented program "Soul Train". Cornelius was born in Chicago. After graduating from DuSable High School in 1954, he joined the US Marine Corps and was stationed in Korea for 18 months. He worked as a car and insurance salesman until the mid-1960s. Encouraged by compliments about his smooth baritone voice, he attended broadcasting school and entered show business as a part-time disc jockey at Chicago's WVON Radio. He then moved onto TV and made a name for himself as host of the program "A Black's View of the News" with WCIU in 1968. Inspired by Dick Clark and "American Bandstand", Cornelius envisioned a similar format geared for the black youths of America that displayed the top contemporary artists. With funding from his own pocket, his notion became a reality when "Soul Train" made its debut on August 17th, 1970. The following year major American markets that included Philadelphia, Atlanta, Los Angeles and Detroit picked up the series broadening its viewership. Among the personalities that frequented included Marvin Gaye, The Jackson 5, Al Green and Aretha Franklin, in addition to David Bowie and Elton John. Cornelius served as host from 1971 until 1993 always closing out the episode with his phrase "We wish you love, peace and soul". In 2006, the final episode of "Soul Train" was filmed. Many giants in the music and television industry have acknowledged the significance and impact the series has had on the African American culture. In his last years Cornelius dealt with personal issues and serious health ailments. He died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. (bio by: C.S.)
Burial: Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
Maintained by: Find A Grave Originally Created by: Dear Jayne Record added: Feb 01, 2012
Find A Grave Memorial# 84308646
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I am a former dancer of soul train and that was a part of my life that I will treasure Don Cornelius was a,brilliant man he was a visionary and genius I love you Mr Cornelius you gave me a chance to express myself and talent by accepting me on your show ...(Read more) -
Frances Green Added: Apr. 8, 2016
"You must have been in a place so dark, you couldn't feel the light reachin' for your through that stormy cloud, had no clue you were masking a troubled soul, God only knows what went wrong & why you would leave the stage in the middle of a song".--Rascal...(Read more) -
Amy Wolfe Added: Mar. 30, 2016