Chauncey Bailey Way named after slain Oakland journalist

Family, colleagues and friends of a slain journalist gathered in Oakland on Saturday for the unveiling of Chauncey Bailey Way.

The stretch of 14th Street, between Broadway and Lakeside in downtown, was named after the 57-year-old journalist who was shot and killed in 2007.

Chauncey was outside his office at the Oakland Post when he was fatally shot. He had written several stories on alleged corruption by a crime syndicate.

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Jurors found the former head of Your Black Muslim Bakery, Yusef Bey IV, guilty of Bailey's assassination. Bailey was allegedly working on a story about the finances of Your Black Muslim Bakery, involving pending bankruptcy.

Oakland city council member Rebecca Kaplan said it is important to honor the life and legacy of Chauncey Bailey, and truth-telling of the Black press.

Bailey studied journalism at Merritt College in Oakland and then San Jose State University. 

He worked at Black newspapers the Oakland Post and San Francisco’s Sun Reporter, then went to the Detroit News, Hartford Courant and United Press International before returning to Oakland to work at the Oakland Tribune for much of the 1990s and early 2000s.

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Colleagues said Bailey asked questions of law enforcement that others at the time would not. He approached reports of crime with skepticism. 

Those honoring him said his life and death resemble the importance of the free press.

Bailey’s legacy has lives on in his son, Chauncey Steven Bailey Jr., who spoke about his own education in racial justice and a long history of Black journalism, according to the East Bay Times.

"He wanted us to carry a sense of pride, and valued the idea that every day, if we could just survive, live, grow and preserve our culture, that we are creating Black history," Bailey Jr. said.

A street sign in Oakland for slain journalist Chauncey Bailey.