Harold “Sonny” Hall, former President of TWU Local 100 and the International Union – and one of TWU’s most memorable and charismatic leaders – has died at the age of 89.
According to his niece, Patricia, Sonny had been in failing health for some time. He passed away in his sleep in hospice care on Jan. 13, 2021.
TWU International President John Samuelsen said, “It’s a sad day for the TWU. I knew Sonny as a young Trackworker, as Local 100 President and now as International President. Sonny was one of the last direct links to Mike Quill and the founders of the TWU. He was an anchor for the TWU and his departure will be deeply felt.”
Sonny was born January 30, 1932 in the Bronx. His father, Harold Sr. was a Bus Operator at the 100thStreet Depot (now Tuskegee Airmen Depot). “My dad was Harold, and I didn’t particularly like being called Harold, so he started calling me ‘Sonny’ and it stuck. I’m sure a lot of people over the years didn’t even know my real name.”
Sonny served in the military as an Army MP at a nuclear facility in Albuquerque, New Mexico. He had enlisted in the Marines when he was 16 with his older brother’s papers, but was sent home after being discovered.
He started out with Omnibus as a cleaner and shifter and then to Bus Operator.
According to his niece, Patricia, Sonny had been in failing health for some time. He passed away in his sleep in hospice care on Jan. 13, 2022.