Though it has been 60 years since Emmett Till’s murder, his killing still resonates with other families of color in the United States today.
Civil rights activists, relatives of the black teen and other families “victimized by racial violence” — including the family of Trayvon Martin and Michael Brown — have invited the public to unite for a commemorative weekend in Chicago to remember Till and to continue the legacy of Till’s mother, Mamie Till Mobley.
“As I travel across the country supporting families who have lost their loved ones through hate crimes, I realized that Mamie lived her life fighting for our youth and fighting for Emmett’s legacy,” Till’s cousin Airicka Gordon Taylor, said in a news release. “This is why we have decided to host the Commemoration. This moment is for Mamie and all that she sacrificed. This is for Emmett, the sacrificial lamb whose death changed the course of the Civil Rights Movement.”
After her son was brutally killed — found with a bullet hole in his head, barbed wire wrapped around his neck and a cotton gin fan weighing him down — Mobley insisted on an open-casket funeral in Chicago. The shocking image sparked a louder call for civil rights, and Mobley, who died 12 years ago, spent her life working and encouraging young people to challenge injustice after her son was killed.