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franklin county times

Medgar Evers' memory honored Tuesday

By Staff
special to The Star
June 9, 2003
Newton countians plan to honor the memory of native son and slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers on Tuesday with a variety of events.
Evers was born July 2, 1925, in Decatur. He grew up and attended public school there. As an adult, he entered the Newton County Courthouse to register to vote and was turned away.
It marked the beginning of his commitment to register black people to vote work he continued in Mississippi throughout the Civil Rights era as field secretary for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. Evers was shot in the back and killed on June 12, 1963, while standing in the driveway of his Jackson home.
The man who shot him, Byron De La Beckwith was tried three times, with the first two trials resulting in hung juries. Beckwith was finally convicted in 1994 and died in prison in 2001 at the age of 80.
On Tuesday, Newton County residents and community leaders will host a homecoming for the Evers family and an essay contest for young people. The announcement of a historical marker at the Newton County Courthouse and an evening event will also bring people together to honor Evers' contributions in the place of his beginnings.
More events are planned at Evers' grave in Arlington National Cemetery. On June 16, at 2 p.m. EST, family, friends and admirers will meet at his gravesite. A program is being planned and hosted by three Chicago-area teenagers and their teacher, who worked on a 10-minute documentary about Evers last year.
Students, East Central Mississippians, members of Congress and others will take part in the service. Other attendees will include Evers' widow, Myrlie Evers-Williams, national Civil Rights movement figures and top history students from across the U.S. participating in National History Day.
For more information about this event, e-mail Chicago teacher Barry Bradford at bbradford@district125.k12.il.us.
Did you know?
The public is invited to attend program honoring slain civil rights leader Medgar Evers on Tuesday, beginning
at 7 p.m. in Huff Auditorium at East Central Community College in Decatur. For more information, call event
coordinator Bill May at 683-7888.