Iconic fashion model Dorothy “Terri” Springer passed away Monday, July 26, at the age of 93. Springer began her career as an EBONY Fashion Fair model in 1959. As one of the first fashion models with a darker complexion, her melanated skin paired with her statuesque figure earned her the affectionate title, “The Black Stallion.”
“I remember being six and being at one of the fashion shows and seeing her walk across the stage as a little girl,” Springer’s niece, Karla Jackson, tells EBONY. ” She loved everything about Johnson Publishing and Fashion Fair.”
Springer was born in Alabama in the Birmingham area, the youngest of four siblings. Her formative years took place in Ohio, a place where she went on to build her life as she entered adulthood. In 1972, the iconic fashion model married Watson Walker, a local surgeon who ran a private practice in the city of Columbus, OH.
The fashionable beauty loved to dress up and entertain guests at her home with her gourmet cooking.
“Aunt Terri was such the lady. I can never remember her not having everything in place. Hair, makeup, everything,” Jackson fondly remembers. “I don’t know if it was her personality or EBONY Fashion Fair training. If she knew people were coming by, she would dress the part. She was always entertaining.”
The always-camera-ready Springer was also an avid pinochle player.
“Aunt Terri traveled to different pinochle tournaments for years,” shares Jackson. “She did that for probably 20 years. She had pinochle parties at her house. She had a pinochle table. It was a big hobby.”
The beloved EBONY Fashion Fair model passed away in Columbus, Ohio on July 26th. She is preceded in death by her husband, who died in 1990, and her four older siblings.
A memorial service for Ms. Springer is scheduled for Saturday, August 7, 2021, at 11:00 AM. It will be held at Diehl-Whittaker Chapel in Columbus, Ohio. Rev. Dr. Otha Gilyard will deliver her eulogy.
Since 1945, EBONY magazine has shined a spotlight on the worlds of Black people in America and worldwide. Our commitment to showcasing the best and brightest as well as highlighting disparities in Black life has been, and will always be, cornerstone to EBONY.
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