Rudy Clay’s Gary Services This Week
June 11, 2013 — The City of Gary says its Genesis Convention Center is the site for a public visitation for former Gary Mayor Rudy Clay, following his death last week at the age of 77 after experiencing cancer.
After a ceremony and prayer service 10am-6pm Tuesday at the Genesis Center, a funeral starts at 11am Wednesday for Clay, whose illness caused him to cancel his re-election bid in 2011, after serving as Gary’s mayor 2006-2011.
Born in Alabama in 1936, Rudolph Clay came to Gary as a child, graduating from Roosevelt High School and serving in the United States Army for two years during the Vietnam era before becoming a civil rights activist.
In 1972 he won election to the state senate and later served as Lake County recorder and Lake County commissioner before becoming mayor in 2006. He served as Gary’s mayor until 2011 when he announced he had cancer.
In 2005 Mr. Clay was elected the first African American to serve as Lake County Democratic chairman. He spent 39 years in elected office at the state, county and local level.