The AME Church family has lost one of their greats with the passing of Rev. Dr. Morris Alexander Buchanan. A longtime resident of the Inland Empire, Morris was married to Allen Chapel AME pastor, Reverend Noella Austin Buchanan.
Morris initially began his employment career as an Army Sergeant Laboratory Technician and was honorably discharged in 1943. But he came to be known throughout the world through his acting career.
During the 50’s and 60’s, Morris pursued his acting career where he distinguished himself as one of a handful of African Americans in over 100 productions. He starred in various roles in radio, movies, television and stage. In addition to producing and directing plays on and off Broadway, he was the president of a production company specializing in Documentary, which made training films. He attended the prestigious Pasadena Community Playhouse and performed throughout the United States, Canada, Africa, England, and France.
His most notable roles were in (The Petrified Forest – 1955) with Humphrey Bogart, Henry Fonda, and Lauren Bacall. Paton Place as Sgt. William Wilson Walker for 37 episodes (1966-1969) with Mia Farrow, Ryan O’Neal and Dorothy Malone, the frequently televised movie, Coffy, 1973 and General Hospital in 1988. Other roles with SAG and AFTRA made are found in the guilds websites.
Answering the call to ministry late in life, he was the oldest student at Fuller Theological Seminary. “Doc” as he was affectionately called was the founder and creator of the Richard Allen Theater Guild at FAME, Pasadena, California using his theatrical skills as the director and producer of numerous plays and musicals. He was the founding pastor of Culver City AMEC, and pastor of Bethel AMEC, Fontana. He continued his ministry as Spiritual Advisor at Corona Community AMEC, Corona; St. James AMEC, St. Louis, MO; and Allen Chapel AMEC, Riverside.