NAACP honors life of civil rights icon Medgar Evers
"In order for us to recognize Medgar and appreciate his work, we must continue to do the work," said Derrick Johnson.
"This is one of our greatest heroes," said Benjamin Jealous
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -
He's a Mississippi icon of the Civil Rights movement and after he was tragically gunned down 50 years ago at his home in Jackson, the name Medgar Evers is still synonymous with big change.
"Fifty years ago he was just a man, unwilling to accept discrimination as the status quo in our country," said NAACP Chairwoman Roslyn Brock.
For Medgar's wife Myrlie Evers-Williams, that change meant giving up the man she loved.
"After fifty years, I still hurt," said Evers-Williams.
Making sure his memory lives on, Myrlie has become a Mississippi icon in her own right serving as an inspiration to many in the Civil Rights struggles that exist today.
"Believe in something you are willing to give your all for," suggested Evers-Williams.
To commemorate those 50 years, the National NAACP is meeting in Mississippi to begin a 30 day celebration of the life and legacy Medgar Evers.
President and CEO of the NAACP Benjamin Jealous says the nation and Mississippi have made measurable strides in civil rights from the ballot box to the workplace but adds work is still ahead. Thursday morning a wreath was placed outside the home, turned museum, where Evers was murdered. Jealous says this type of remembrance is what keeps the fight for change alive.
"This is one of our greatest heroes," states Jealous. "It'll be a time we hope of healing and coming together, a time for folks to really mark just how much progress we've made and how much of it was made because of people like him who gave everything so the rest of us could move forward."
Derrick Johnson, President of the Mississippi NAACP, says the sacrifice of Evers will instill determination in generations to come.
"In order for us to recognize Medgar and appreciate his work, we must continue to do the work," said Johnson.
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