Cherokee Tribune

When Pat Tanner marched along the highway from Selma to Montgomery in 1965, she had no idea the Alabama march led by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. would go down in history.

Saturday marked the 50th anniversary of “Bloody Sunday,” when nonviolent marchers first attempted to walk from Selma, Alabama, to the state’s capital of Montgomery to fight for equal voting rights for all Americans.

“We had no idea we were going to be part of something historical. You just saw wrong that you wanted to right,” the Canton resident and former city council member said of her time in the march. “What I saw and what I felt will be with me for a lifetime, until the good Lord calls me home.”

The historic march for voting rights was actually the third from Selma to Montgomery in that year, but it was the only one to make it all the way from Selma to the Alabama capital.

Tanner, a young student at Barber-Scotia College in North Carolina at the time, was compelled to participate in the historic third march after watching footage of what would become known as Bloody Sunday.

“It’s bad enough when you were seeing it on TV, but to actually live it? That was an experience,” Tanner said. read more…