Wednesday, October 5, 2011
Civil Rights Giant Fred Shuttlesworth dies
The Rev. Fred Shuttlesworth, the civil rights icon hailed in his native Alabama as a “black Moses” whose fearless courage a half century ago helped lift the civil rights movement from a Southern skirmish into a national crusade that forced America to examine its soul, has died, his daughter has confirmed.
“Daddy lived an incredible life and now he’s at peace,” said Patricia Shuttlesworth Massengill, his eldest daughter. Massengill, along with her sister Ruby Bester and their brother Fred Shuttlesworth Jr., traveled to Birmingham from Cincinnati Tuesday and spent about three hours “praying and talking to” their father, whose once thundering voice was silenced several years ago by a stroke.
Their other sibling, Carolyn Shuttlesworth, visited their father in a Birmingham hospice last week.
Described in a 1961 CBS documentary as “the man most feared by Southern racists,” Shuttlesworth survived bombings, beatings, repeated jailings and other attacks – physical and financial – in his unyielding determination to heal the country’s most enduring, divisive and volatile chasm. read more