A new bulletproof memorial to Emmett Till was unveiled Saturday after the previous sign was repeatedly damaged.
The new sign, made out of bulletproof steel and ten times heavier than the previous one, according to HuffPost, was memorialized Saturday as members of Till’s family gathered at Graball Landing in Mississippi. Graball Landing is the site where the 14-year-old’s body was pulled from the Tallahatchie River after he was murdered in 1955.
The sign will also be behind a gate and under the watch of surveillance cameras, according to the memorial’s commission.
Ja’han Jones, a reporter at HuffPost, shared a photo of the new signage.
A new, bulletproof memorial for Emmett Till was erected on the shore of the Tallahatchie River today, after vandals’ repeated attempts to erase his memory here. pic.twitter.com/25hTobCfWl— Ja'han Jones (@_Jahan) October 19, 2019
Till was murdered after a white woman accused him of whistling at her in 1955. The teen’s death served as a catalyst in the Civil Rights Movement.
“This marker answers the question as to what we do with our history,” Reverend Willie Williams, co-director of the Emmett Till Memorial Commission, which called for the new marker, told HuffPost. “Do we learn from it? Do we use it to help our society have greater respect for humanity? This answers that.”
Till’s cousins, Rev. Wheeler Parker, who is the last living witness of Till’s kidnapping, and Ollie Gordon were in attendance, as was Gordon’s daughter HuffPost reported.
Three University of Mississippi students prompted outrage after posing with guns for a photo in front of the memorial, which was riddled with bullet holes at the time.