New initiative called H2T lobbies to change street in east Bakersfield

Dr. Tyree Toliver was a pastor for 50 years.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. - H2T is the name a new initiative that aims to honor a man who dedicated his life to changing lives in east Bakersfield.

The late Dr. Tyree Toliver wore many hats in the community, and now members of St. John Missionary Baptist Church are making sure that legacy is never forgotten.

"His concern was southeast Bakersfield and that is why he built that brand new church there," said Tyree Douglas, Toliver's son. "He could have built it anywhere, (but) he was concerned (with) developing the lives of people and trying to make them better."

Toliver spent 50 years as a pastor at St. Johns.

"He was a uniquely special individual," said Douglas. "Everyone felt the same way. We all loved him. We all cared about him because he loved us, and he made sure we all knew he loved us."

The congregation he loved so much is located at the corner of East Brundage Lane and Hayes Street.

"We're currently in the process of renaming Hayes Street to Tolliver Street," said Danny O'Neal, the chairperson for the Social Action Committee. "We came against some opposition, of course, but right now the project is gaining momentum and more people are supporting it."

On Wednesday night, the group reached a major milestone. They told the city council they
collected all the signatures they need to jump-start the renaming process.

"This would just be a great honor and recognition of a great man that dedicated 50 years of service," said O'Neal.

Now that all of the signatures have been collected to start the renaming process, the next step is to file a formal application. The group plans to do that during the last week of December.

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