A music legend passes away Tuesday morning at Willis Knighton at the age of 80. Dr. Eddie Giles is known internationally for his music recording career during the 1960’s. His compositions are chronicled in the Smithsonian Institute, and have been performed and re-recorded by international bands at music festivals in the UK and Australia.
Since 1993 Giles served as senior pastor of the Salem Missionary Baptist Church. He was also a founding member of the Shreveport Pastor Police and a member of the International Conference of Police Chaplains.
Giles worked at KOKA for 45 years and served as the Program and Music Director at the radio station. Under his guidance, KOKA was awarded ‘Station of the Year’ by the Stellar Awards for 2012. He is fondly referred to as the ‘Radio Pastor’, and has hosted the highest rated gospel radio show through Arbitron for twenty years consecutively in the local and surrounding market.
Dr. Giles is the founder of the National Angels of the Air Ways Connection, and is the former Assistant Board Chairman of the National Singing Quartet Convention of America. He was the first African American to serve as a board member of Local 116 of the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada. He has also served on the Board of Directors of the Friends of the Municipal Auditorium, and numerous other organizations.
Dr. Giles and his wife Brenda McDuffey Giles celebrated 36 years of marriage on February 14th. They have eight children, 27 grand children and seven great grandchildren.
The couple founded The Shepherd’s Farm, a nonprofit organization, where they assisted children in Shreveport and surrounding areas with outreach programs designed to level the academic playing field for underserved youth, and help to improve their self esteem.