CHICAGO—The blustery weather outside brought a touch of winter to the air, reminiscent of Chicago’s unique seasons. Inside the gymnasium of the Muhammad University of Islam, located on the grounds of The National Center, a warm and elegant dining area awaited. Every seat was occupied by believers including family members and friends.

The atmosphere was filled with the enchanting melodies of the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan’s musical project “Let’s Change the World,” playing over the sound system.

The janazah (funeral) service held to honor Brother Joshua Nasir Farrakhan was a solemn occasion, but the repast that followed was truly unforgettable. Known for touching the lives of many, the repast became a beautiful celebration of Bro. Joshua’s remarkable life and enduring legacy. Friends, family, and guests came together to share heartfelt stories and cherished memories of this extraordinary man.

Bro. Joshua Farrakhan was the fifth child and second oldest son of Minister Farrakhan and his wife, Mother Khadijah Farrakhan. He returned to Allah (God) on Nov. 18.


Attendees at the repast were a diverse and energetic group, each with unique stories and memories. Among them was Student Minister Jamil Muhammad of Mosque No. 6 in Baltimore, who shared his thoughts on Bro. Joshua.

“I had the privilege of knowing him for over 45 years, and I mistakenly believed that he would always be a part of my life like many of us take for granted. But as he passed away, I realized his true impact on me. His unwavering dedication, innovative methods, and charismatic humor made him exceptional,” shared Student Min. Jamil.

Also present was Ngozi Enyia, a relative who fondly described Bro. Joshua as a remarkable individual who led a fulfilling life. She emphasized his charm, charisma, leadership qualities, and role loving father and grandfather to her son.

Reflecting on the affection he showed her, she acknowledged that this was a difficult and emotional day. However, she emphasized the importance of remembering and celebrating the incredible life he led, leaving no opportunity untouched. She expressed deep appreciation for his life.

Fard Farrakhan fondly described his “fantastic” grandfather. “He brightened everyone’s day, consistently bringing laughter and blessings. Despite facing personal struggles, his radiant spirit and the legacy he left behind shone through,” he said.

“It is wonderful to witness his impact on others. I will deeply miss him and will forever love him. I am grateful for the gifts my grandfather bestowed upon me, including the ability to communicate and bring joy through conversation and smiles.”

Imani Muhammad Farrakhan, Bro. Joshua’s granddaughter from Phoenix, Arizona, admired her grandfather. “He is truly a remarkable man who greatly contributed to the Nation. Even though he has passed, his spirit lives on through us. We must continue to live in a way that makes him proud. Let us remember to keep a sense of humor and his memory alive,” she told The Final Call.

Muhammad Farrakhan, one of Bro. Joshua’s sons, was clear in his remarks. “I want everyone to know that my father was a truly blessed man who had a profound impact on many lives. I am grateful beyond measure to have had him as my father. I extend my heartfelt thanks to him for everything he has done for me and our family. He always stood by others and never left anyone behind.”

Bro. Joshua was a family man and loved his parents, siblings, children, grandchildren, nieces and nephews tremendously. In 1977 at the age of 18 he married Sister Marie Muhammad, daughter of the Most Honorable Elijah Muhammad and Mother Evelyn Muhammad. This union bore six children.

Bro. Joshua was preceded in death by his daughter Melia. He was the father of eight sons: Joshua Jr. (Anne), Elijah, Louis (Kristy), Fard, Muhammad, Amey, Khalifah, Sharrieff and his youngest daughter Olivia Bender.

Ms. Jennie Ducy, the mother of Bro. Joshua’s daughter Olivia, spoke highly of him. She expressed how he brought two families together against all odds and described him as a loving, kind, and patient man. 

Sis. Maya Fard Muhammad, mother of his son Khalifah, shared, “He could make a mime laugh. He truly was a beacon of light in the midst of all this darkness, a true example of the lifelong pursuit of happiness. He will forever be missed and honored.”

Amidst the upbeat and reflective mood of the evening, attendees dined on a delicious meal prepared and served by the M.G.T. and G.C.C. (Muslim Girls Training and General Civilization Class, the women of the N.O.I.) under the direction of Student National M.G.T. Captain Naeemah Muhammad, her staff and volunteers.

One highlight of the evening was when it was announced that Mother Khadijah kindly asked each family to gather and pose for a picture as a keepsake of the special gathering. Throughout the night, the Minister and Mother Khadijah graciously and with smiles greeted family members and guests.

Later in the evening, an unexpected celebration erupted when it was revealed that it was Maria Farrakhan’s birthday, the sister of Bro. Joshua. Adding to the excitement, the renowned Stevie Wonder graced the event as a special guest seated alongside Minister Farrakhan.

To honor Sister Maria, the audience was treated to a mesmerizing rendition of Mr. Wonder’s iconic song, “Happy Birthday,” which resonated through the venue’s sound system with pure joy as people happily sang along.

In an interview with The Final Call, Mr. Wonder expressed his deep admiration for Bro. Joshua, and described him as a remarkable individual who has touched the lives of many with his innately kind nature. “You know, I love Joshua and he’s always been just a wonderful spirit and he brought everyone to know the goodness that he possessed.”

Student Min. Troy Muhammad, of Mosque No. 1 in Detroit, expressed his admiration for Bro. Joshua and his contributions to Saviours’ Day, the N.O.I.’s annual convention. According to Student Min. Troy, Brother Joshua was always a joy to be around and had a talent for connecting with people. He ensured those who wanted to meet the Minister had the opportunity, as he knew their energy would be reciprocated.

Mid-Atlantic Regional Minister Abdul Khadir Muhammad from Washington, D.C., spoke fondly describing Bro. Joshua as a dear friend who always shared his love. “I felt welcomed and appreciated in Joshua’s presence,” Student Min. Khadir said as he expressed his deep sadness at Joshua’s passing. He was also moved by the magnitude of the memorial service held earlier in the day. “Joshua truly touched my heart,” he concluded.

—Michael Z. Muhammad, Contributing Writer