Dexter King remembered by sister Bernice King as a ‘visionary and brilliant leader’

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A day after the death of Dexter King, the younger son of civil rights icon Martin Luther King, Jr., the devastated family rallied around each other and remembered the former head of the King Center as a visionary who helped build upon his father’s legacy.

During an often-teary address Tuesday at the King Center, Bernice King said her brother, who died from prostate cancer at 62 in Malibu, California, threw “all of himself” into protecting their father’s legacy.

“He put his creativity into it,” she said. “People should see him as an innovative, creative leader who was very fierce and focused on ensuring that the legacy of my father is protected in the right manner.”

King, 60, added that her brother’s leadership and understanding of intellectual property allowed the family to assess the value of some of King’s speeches and writings.

“Dexter was criticized,” she said. “It wasn’t about profit; it was about a prophet — Dexter King was a prophet who could see well into the future. We understood intellectual property in entertainment.”

But her brother made sure “Daddy is represented in a new world. He was the one at the forefront of it. He told us all the time: ‘The new real estate is intellectual property.’ He drove that in our heads … Dexter pioneered in this area.”

She said Dexter King stressed upon the family the need to advance their father’s legacy through technology, and that his vision will be fulfilled.

In 1986, when King’s birthday became a national holiday, Dexter King produced the holiday song that featured Whitney Houston, Stephanie Mills, New Edition and many other artists.

“He put that together,” she said. “I always admired his brilliant mind, his ability to innovate. … He was a strategist.”

Bernice King said Dexter was a vegan for nearly half his life. He died in his sleep after a three-year battle with prostate cancer. “He’s with mom and dad,” she said. “And I understand, from his wife, that he had a smile on his face. And I think that was my parents saying, ‘Welcome home, son.’”

He was cremated on Tuesday. Plans for his services have not been set.

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This article was originally published on NBCNews.com