Atlanta residents paid their respects for civil rights activist and longtime Georgia Congressman John Lewis, who died at age 80 on Friday, July 17 after a six-month battle with cancer.
This video shows the quiet scene on Saturday in downtown Atlanta at the corner of Auburn Avenue and Jessie Hill Junior Drive, where a 65-foot-tall mural honors the lifelong activist.
Lewis, the son of sharecroppers, was brutally beaten on March 7, 1965 during a civil rights march as it crossed the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama. Lewis marched that day alongside Martin Luther King, Jr., Hosea Williams, and hundreds of demonstrators.
Lewis suffered a skull fracture as a result of the attack but survived, dedicating his life to civil rights, social justice, and politics, serving Georgia’s 5th district for 17 consecutive terms since 1987.
Lewis’s family announced his death on Saturday morning.
“It is with inconsolable grief and enduring sadness that we announce the passing of U.S. Rep. John Lewis,” his family said in a statement. “He was honored and respected as the conscience of the US Congress and an icon of American history, but we knew him as a loving father and brother. He was a stalwart champion in the on-going struggle to demand respect for the dignity and worth of every human being. He dedicated his entire life to non-violent activism and was an outspoken advocate in the struggle for equal justice in America. He will be deeply missed.” Credit: Sylvester Johnson III via Storyful