Bernard Jeffrey McCullough aka “Bernie Mac” born October 5, 1957 on the south side of Chicago. Raise by his single mom. Mary. Who died when he was 16 years old of cancer.
He attended Chicago Vocational Career Academy School ,also where the legendary Dick Bickus also attended. He later moved to Tampa, Florida taking odd jobs which include working for UPS.
Like many stand up struggling Comedians Mr. Mac had his share of disappointments. He moved to Tampa Florida and had opportunities to showcase his talent and was met with a hostile crowd on DEF Comedy Jam… which was absolutely the launching pad for many start-up comedians who later on became greatly successful… The Kings of Comedy. which included Cedric”the Entertainer”, Steve Harvey, DL. Hugley…
If you didn’t know he was a die-hard fan of singer, Rachelle Ferrell and the … CHICAGO WHITE SOX and attended the 2005 World Series Victory.
Bernie Mac, went on to appear in many movies with small roles that turned into greater success!
The start of 1994 House Party 3, Players Club, Charlie Angels Full Throttle, Ice Cube’s, FRIDAY, Ocean Eleven with Brad Pitt… Co starred with Samuel Jackson in “Soul Men” and two of my favorites… Guess Who? Which was a remake of Guess Who Coming To Dinner and Mr. 3000.
He also did a film with Chicago’s Robin Williams and actor John Travolta in 2009 Disney’s Old Dogs.
He appeared in many comedy shows with brief appearances on the journey did his own Semi-autobiographical comedy in 2001 THE BERNIE MAC SHOW… which I adored.
Mr. Mac receive many awards for his outstanding comedy from the Peabody Award to a Emmy for “Outstanding Writing” … Mac was listed number 72 on Comedy Central 100 list for one of the best comedians of all time,..
Yet, Bernie Mac real struggles met with no laughing matter when he disclosed his battle with sarcoidosis since being diagnosed in 1983… An inflammation of the cells which attacks the organs. He in fact became terribly ill in the running of his show.Unfortunately the show ended in April of 2006.
Mr. Mac had taken ill during the first week of August in 2008 died that morning of August 9th… I will never forget that day… Bernie Mac died from pneumonia a complication from the disease… Over 7,000 people attended his funeral at Reverend James T. Meeks… House of Hope.
My mother died from this same dreadful disease,
My mother died in 1985, April 9th… Bernie Mac and my mother are buried in the same area of Washington Memorial Gardens, in Homewood, Illinois…
February 28, 2012..Chicago named 69th Street(Sangamon) in Englewood where he grew up…, Bernie Mac’s Way…
I had taken very ill that day and couldn’t attend the ceremony. However, Pastor Pfleger, and Reverend Jesse Jackson were apart of the dedication ceremony!
He left his beautiful wife Rhonda, who is now re-married to a Chicago Detective and one daughter Je’ Neice who worked countless on his foundation for finding a cure for sarcoidosis the organization came under fire…
Since April, of 2014 his daughter Je’ Niece resigned from the organization … and so did Lt. Governor Sheila Simon who serve as an honorary chair of the Bernie Mac Foundation ,since her husband also suffered with the disease because of questionable mishandling of the charity finances… I have no idea where the organization stands today! However, Bernie Mac pave the way and open the door to the awareness of this dreadful disease.
Mr. Bernie Mac… was dearly love and missed terribly… He was someone I adored and one of Chicago’s very own!