Viola Liuzzo Memorial - Murdered by KKK after the Salem to Montgomery Voting Rights March

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Ben_Tate on January 25, 2012

"Viola Fauver Gregg Liuzzo (April 11, 1925 – March 25, 1965) was a Unitarian Universalist civil rights activist from Michigan, who was murdered by Ku Klux Klan members after the 1965 Selma to Montgomery marches in Alabama. One of the Klansmen in the car from which the shots were fired was a Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) informant.

Liuzzo was horrified by the images of the aborted march on March 7, 1965 at the Edmund Pettus Bridge which became known as "Bloody Sunday." Nine days later, she took part in a protest at Wayne State, then called her husband to tell him she would be traveling to Selma, saying that the struggle "was everybody's fight."

After the march concluded on March 25, Liuzzo, assisted by Leroy Moton, a 19-year-old African American, helped drive local marchers home in her 1963 Oldsmobile. As they were driving along Route 80, a car tried to force them off the road. A car with four Klan members then pulled up alongside Liuzzo's car and shot directly at her, hitting her twice in the head, killing her instantly. Her car veered into a ditch and crashed into a fence.

Although Moton was covered with blood, the bullets had missed him. He lay motionless when the Klansmen reached the car to check on their victims. After that car left, he began running for the next half hour, and eventually flagged down a truck driven by Rev. Leon Riley that was bringing civil rights workers back to Selma.

Liuzzo's funeral was held at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic church on March 30 in Detroit, with many prominent members of both the civil rights movement and government there to pay their respects. Included in this group were Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.; NAACP executive director Roy Wilkins; Congress on Racial Equality national leader James Farmer; Michigan lieutenant governor William G. Milliken; Teamsters president Jimmy Hoffa; and United Auto Workers president Walter Reuther.

Less than two weeks after her death, a charred cross was found in front of four Detroit homes, including the Liuzzo residence."

-Excerpt from Wikipedia

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Photo details

  • Uploaded on January 25, 2012
  • © All Rights Reserved
    by Ben_Tate
    • Camera: Canon EOS REBEL T1i
    • Taken on 2011/07/10 13:47:07
    • Exposure: 0.006s (1/160)
    • Focal Length: 24.00mm
    • F/Stop: f/13.000
    • ISO Speed: ISO100
    • Exposure Bias: 0.00 EV
    • No flash

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