University of Alabama Honors Civil Rights Pioneers. (Noteworthy News)

Black Issues in Higher Education, July 3, 2003 | Go to article overview

University of Alabama Honors Civil Rights Pioneers. (Noteworthy News)


TUSCALOOSA, ALA.

Forty years after Vivian Malone Jones walked past Gov. George Wallace and into history as one of the first Blacks to attend the University of Alabama, she said she has forgiven Wallace for trying to stop her, but can never forget.

The civil rights pioneer spoke last month at a forum commemorating the 40th anniversary of integration at Alabama.

"What he did will be with us forever," Jones said of what became known as Wallace's "Stand in the Schoolhouse Door."

Jones, who was Vivian Malone in 1963, spoke at one of several events held last month by the university that revolved key figures in the school's integration, highlighted by keynote speaker Robert Kennedy Jr.

Jones said she remembered Wallace apologizing to her later for blocking the doors of Foster Auditorium on June 11, 1963. By the time he apologized, she said, age and being shot in an assassination attempt had taken its toll on the man who once proclaimed, "Segregation now, segregation tomorrow, segregation forever."

James Hood, the second Black student to enroll at Alabama with Jones on June 11, 1963, said he has forgiven Wallace. …

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