Program Success Magazine August 2020 | Page 3

Representative John Lewis ’ casket travels over the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma , Alabama for the final time , where he was beaten while marching for voting rights 55 years ago . In 1965 , when Lewis was just 25 , he helped lead a march across the bridge for Black voting rights . The protesters met resistance from Alabama state troopers , and Lewis was among those beaten on the bridge during an incident that came to be known as Bloody Sunday .
The march actually almost never happened since several leaders were concerned about the danger , but it was Lewis who insisted on going through with the demonstration . SNCC voted against it & Dr . Martin Luther King sent Andrew Young to stop it . But John Lewis insisted on marching . “ If the people want to march , I ’ m going to march with them ” he said
Lewis was carried across the bridge in a horse-drawn carriage on Sunday as part of a slate of events to honor the life of a man who spent his life fighting for racial justice . Hundreds of bystanders gathered to watch the body of the “ Conscience of Congress ”.

John Lewis The “ Conscience of Congress ”

Two horses and a driver led the flag-draped casket , which paused for two minutes at 10:55 a . m . central time when it reached the top of the bridge above the Alabama River . On the other side , the words of “ We Shall Overcome ” could be heard as family , hundreds of onlookers and several troopers greeted Lewis .
A military honor guard moved the casket from the caisson to a hearse for the trip to Montgomery , where he lain in state . Alabama state police were accompanied Lewis to the capital . “ It is poetic justice that this time Alabama state troopers saw John to his safety ,” Rep . Terri A . Sewell ( D-Ala .) said .
Congressman John Lewis died earlier this month at 80 years old from pancreatic cancer after serving in Congress for 17 years as a Representative for Georgia ’ s 5th Congressional District . His body will lie in state in the U . S . Capitol today , after a special ceremony , which about 80 lawmakers are expected to attend . The politician will then go on to lie in state in the Georgia State Capitol . On Thursday , Lewis will be laid to rest after a private celebration of his life at the Ebenezer Baptist Church Horizon Sanctuary in Atlanta .