Tuesday, April 21, 2015

R is for Ruby Bridges

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Ruby Bridges
(1954 -  )

Ms. Bridges was the first African-American girl to attend public school in the south.

As seen in this iconic photo, this adorable little girl had to be escorted to 1st grade by her mother and US Marshals to protect her against violent mobs.  She spent her first day at school in the principal's office because no other students showed up.  The parents kept them all home.  Only one teacher offered to teach Ms. Bridges and Mrs. Henry only had Ruby as a student due to other parents protesting.  She never got to leave the classroom for lunch or recess, and if she had to use the restroom, the federal agents walked her down the hall.  One of the federal agents remembers her showing so much courage, "marching along like a little soldier".

Things seemed to be a bit better once she started 2nd grade.  Ms. Bridges went on to graduate from an integrated high school, studied travel and tourism and worked as a travel agent.  She married and has 4 sons.

In 1999, she founded the Ruby Bridges Foundation in New Orleans to promote tolerance, respect and appreciation for all.

I could go on and on - so click the "source" links below and read all about her.  Ms. Bridges is a true inspiration.

photo source

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