A long-time activist in the Cape Verdean community has passed away.

Tom Lopes died Wednesday at the age of 70, after battling a lengthy illness.

Lopes was a well-known New Bedford resident, having served as a two-term state representative from 1975 to 1978, and serving as the owner and operator of Cape Verdean News for over thirty years. Lopes was often seen at campaign rallies and political venues, documenting the proceedings with his video camera.

Long-time friend Ervin "Tootsie" Russell says Lopes became quite handy with the video production process.

Lopes had served in the Navy, and graduated from Bridgewater State College in 1972, and completed some graduate work through MIT.

He leaves behind his wife, four sisters, and two daughters. Final arrangements are being made through the Saunders-Dwyer Funeral Home on Parker Street.

A memorial service for Tom Lopes will be held on September 23rd at the Cape Verdean Vets Hall on Purchase Street from 3-8pm. For more information on the memorial, call Celia's Boutique at 508-994-3833.