Linda Brown, who as a Kansas girl, was at the center of the landmark US Supreme Court ruling that struck down racial segregation in schools, has died at the age of 76. Her father, Oliver Brown, tried to enroll the family in an all-white school in Topeka, Kansas. The case was sparked when he and several black families were turned away.
The NAACP’s (National Association for the Advancement of Colored People) legal arm brought the lawsuit to challenge segregation in public schools. Oliver Brown became the lead plaintiff in the 1954 Brown versus Board of Education decision by the Supreme Court that ended school segregation.
The nine justices all ruled that schools couldn’t be separate but equal, ending public school segregation. 40 years later Brown lamented that Topeka schools were still under court order to desegregate:
“We feel disheartened that 40 years later we’re still talking about the desegregation of schools but it is very necessary that the struggle continues because for generations coming on behind us we have to be ever mindful of what’s going to happen for them”.
Sherrilyn Ifill, the President and Director-Counsel of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund said in a statement:
“Linda is one of a band of heroic young people who, along with her family, courageously fought to end the ultimate symbol of white supremacy, racial segregation in public schools”.
Watch this news segment and more like it on LoveWorld USA News with Holly McClure.