For Emmett Till’s family, national monument proclamation cements his inclusion in the American story

Jul 25, 2023

When President Joe Biden signed a proclamation Tuesday establishing a national monument honoring Emmett Till and his mother, Mamie Till-Mobley, it marked the fulfillment of a promise Till’s relatives made after his death 68 years ago.

The Black teenager from Chicago, whose abduction, torture and killing in Mississippi in 1955 helped propel the Civil Rights Movement, is now an American story, not just a civil rights story, said Till’s cousin the Rev. Wheeler Parker Jr.

“It has been quite a journey for me from the darkness to the light,” Parker said during a proclamation signing ceremony at the White House attended by dozens, including other family members, members of Congress and civil rights leaders.