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ICRCM Director Reflects On Franklin McCain's Legacy

1:48 PM, Jan 10, 2014   |    comments
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GREENSBORO, N.C. -- Franklin McCain's impact is felt and seen throughout The International Civil Rights Center and Museum in Greensboro.

On Friday, Bamidele Demerson, the Executive Director, said while he's certainly feeling a sense of loss, he also has a tremendous sense of gratitude for McCain.

Read: Franklin McCain, Of The Greensboro Four, Dies

McCain left an incredible legacy and the ICRCM is just part of it.

"When we think about him being 17 or 18 years of age, and making the decision with fellow students to come and sit at a segregated lunch counter in 1960, that was a tremendous act of courage and so that stands as an example for students today that when you see something wrong in society, in which you live, you have right to critique it and you have the right to make a better society," said Demerson.

Demerson said McCain didn't stop after the famous day in 1960. He continued to work for issues that were important to him.

He said McCain chaired the NAACP Legal Defense Fund. And he served on the board at a number of universities in North Carolina.

McCain continued to take an active interest in his community.

He was at the ICRCM when it opened in 2010 and he was there for the Juneteenth Telethon last year with his supportive stance.

Last year, McCain's granddaughter interviewed him at the very counter where he sat in 1960. She was a college freshman at the time.

"The passing of the torch if you will.  We all have a contribution and young people can certainly make that contribution, so it was good to see her interviewing her grandfather. Of course she had heard the stories many time before, but to record it, that makes it a very precious document," said Demerson.

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