Week long civil rights commemoration wraps up with mega service - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

Week long civil rights commemoration wraps up with mega service

Posted: Updated:
SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -

The festivities commemorating the 50th anniversary of the civil rights movement wrapped up Sunday evening with a mega civil rights celebration and worship service.

50 years ago on Sunday evening marks one of the worst days for racial intolerance in Shreveport. That's when armed horseback riding police stormed into a worship service at Little Union Baptist Church. Political and church leaders gathered to remember that day and celebrate how far the community has come.

Also in attendance was grandfather Ennis Jones, who grew up generations apart from his grandson Titus and experienced a very different Shreveport, "When I was growing up, they only had one school for blacks in Caddo Parish that was Booker T. Washington High School," said Jones.

He explained to KSLA News 12 that he brought his grandson to learn some history from the final event of the 50th year commemoration of the civil rights movement in North Louisiana. "They need to learn what people went through years ago, that nothing comes free," said Jones.

United States Senator Mary Landrieu joined Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover and other church leaders to honor civil rights activists and talk about the important role the local community played in the civil rights movement. "Here in Shreveport there were acts of defiance and courage that need to be remembered," said Sen. Landrieu.

Many admit the City of Shreveport has come a long way since the civil rights movement in the 1960's, but Shreveport Mayor Cedric Glover agreed more work needs to be done, "We are determined to ensure, the Shreveport of 25 years from now, the Shreveport of 50 years from now, will be even better than the one we are in, here today," said Glover.

NAACP Shreveport President Lloyd Thompson told the crowd that in order to continue moving forward, the young folks must learn their history. As for Titus Jones, what happened during his grandfather's time is disturbing. "The fact that a man had police officers beat the black people, that shocked me."

Thompson explained what he really wants the young people to take away is differences can still be made to make for a better future.

Copyright 2013 KSLA. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow