Faith Dane Crannitch (1923-2020)

In Memoriam

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Photo by Pleasant Mann, Courtesy American Classic Pageant.

I am saddened by the passing of Faith, an accomplished Broadway and film actress, DC Mayoral candidate and DC Statehood activist. She was 96.

I first met Faith in the late 1990s after being startled by a blast from her bugle at a community event. She was a ubiquitous figure on the DC scene for decades.

Faith was an accomplished actress who originated the role of Mazeppa in the Broadway and film versions of ‘Gypsy.’ She ran for Mayor of Washington, DC on several occasions, most recently in 2014. She was also an arts and DC Statehood activist known for punctuating DC events by playing that bugle.

Faith is pictured with former DC Mayor Adrian Fenty in this file photo. Photo: A. Lightman

Faith returned to the stage as a contestant in the American Classic Pageant, of which I am the master of ceremonies and Board Chair. She brought down the house performing a DC Statehood monologue while wearing a red, white and blue outfit and modeled a stunning gold and white sequined gown on the way to being crowned First Runner Up at the 2009 Pageant at the Lincoln Theatre.

Faith was a regular at Shaw Main Streets events, bringing her bugle to holiday parties and other celebrations.

Her most recent public appearance was at a Black History Month event this February honoring Walter Fauntroy, who was Faith’s pastor at New Bethel Baptist Church in Shaw for decades. Although Faith had been living in a nursing home for several years following a stroke, she couldn’t miss an opportunity to see Reverend Fauntroy honored.

Faith is survived by her husband, Jude Crannitch, who shared his life with her for 45 years.

A celebration of Faith’s life will be held at New Bethel Baptist Church after the current health emergency has passed.

Alexander M. Padro is the Executive Director of Shaw Main Streets and a ten-term DC elected official for ANC 6E01 as well as a nonprofit executive.