Emmett Till’s family honored during Juneteenth celebration in Jackson, demands answers from Till’s accuser

Updated: Jun. 19, 2021 at 10:53 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - Today, people around the world celebrated Juneteenth, including here in the capital city.

Councilman Kenneth Stokes hosted a luncheon today at Eddie’s Soul Food Kitchen to celebrate the end of slavery in the United States.

Councilman Stokes was accompanied by the family of Emmett Till, who was honored at the event.

During the event, Emmett Till’s family spoke about Till’s accuser — Carolyn Bryant.

The family says they want to talk about what happened when the 14-year-old was accused and killed in 1955.

“We would love to talk to Carolyn Bryant and find out what really happened,” said Till’s cousin Gloria Johnson. “I know she wouldn’t want to tell us, but we are hoping and praying that one day we would be able to speak to her and see what happened.”

Pricilla Sterling, a cousin of Till, says she and her family members would love to talk to Bryant because she is the one who holds the answers to what happened that night.

The 14-year-old boy was brutally murdered in Money, Mississippi, in 1955 for allegedly flirting with a white woman.

His death helped spark the civil rights movement.

While this family is still looking for justice, they hope the lesson learned from slavery and the brutal killing of their loved one will continue to affect good change worldwide.

They also want to see two critical pieces of legislation passed — to put the Emmett Till Anti-Lynching Act in the forefront along with the John Lewis Voting Rights Act.

“America will be progressing, and we will make major strides in the united states to show we are trying to come together in solidarity,” said Sterling.

Juneteenth is a celebration commemorating the emancipation of enslaved African Americans.

Councilman Stokes and community members say the day is even more special because it is now a federal holiday across the United States.

“We like the idea of freedom. We support Juneteenth,” resident Eddie James said.

“Juneteenth is great,” said Sterling. We need it, and it is our heritage.”

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