The sign marking the site where Emmett Till’s body was found in Tallahatchie County is now pierced by more than 40 bullet holes.
14-year-old Emmett Till was kidnapped and brutally murdered in 1955 after allegedly whistling at a White woman. His body was thrown in the Tallahatchie River. The two White men responsible for his death were found “not guilty” by an all-White jury. Till’s death was a major moment in the Civil Rights Movement, and his casket is now on display in the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
The sign was found vandalized with bullets after being discovered by Kevin Wilson Jr. on Oct. 15. A week after a photo of the memorial went viral, the Emmett Till Interpretive Center announced that they had raised about $15,200 to replace the marker.
“I was very emotional. I did not expect to see the site, the marker, with bullet holes in it,” Wilson told WJTV. “That marker was just evidence that there are people who are still living in those areas who still hold those ideologies dear to their heart. Ideologies that we’re trying to get away from.”
The vandalism of the memorial is more than enough of an indication that hateful rhetoric and racism is still prevalent in this country. We still have a long way to go before we can say that we have moved away from racial discrimination.