The work and murder of Mississippi Resident, and NAACP Field Secretary Medgar Evers has never been given the level of attention and discussion that has been given to other Martyrs of the Civil Rights Movement. Undoubtedly it has been his widow, Myrlie Ever's, tireless fight that has ensured that his name is not forgotten altogether-as so many others have. Actively fighting to protect the rights of Black Citizens in Mississippi, from 1952 until his assassination in 1963, Medgar Evers played an instrumental role in the fight for the integration of the University of Mississippi, justice in the murder of Emmett Till, protection of voting rights, and several other of the issues that were commonly faced in the Jim Crow Era. In his role, as Field Secretary for the NAACP, Evers organized economic boycotts, voter registration drives, and other mass demonstrations in hopes of making it difficult for business's and local government agencies to continue to perpetuate racial inequality.
As Medgar Evers profile grew, and white supremacist groups became increasingly vigilant in efforts to maintain the status quo, death treats began to become more common & frequent. In May 1963, the Evers Home was fire-bombed-and on June 12 1963-Medgar Evers would be gunned down in front of his home.
Byron De La Beckwith, of Mississippi's White Citizens Council, was charged with Ever's Murder. Eyewitness statements placed De La Beckwith near the scene, and his prints were found on the murder weapon; but two separate All-White Juries failed to reach a verdict. De La Beckwith was allowed to go free, until evidence of possible jury tampering was found in 1989. Based on new witness testimony, Byron De La Beckwith was indicted again, and eventually convicted in 1994. He would die in prison in 2001. None of this would have been possible, if not for the unyielding efforts of Medgar's widow, Myrlie Evers, who NEVER stopped searching for evidence for which to bring the murderer to justice. Ironically Medgar Evers was assassinated on the same night that President John F. Kennedy utilized the Alabama National Guard to force integration of The University of Alabama; and later that night, gave a televised speech announcing that he intended to push forward with what would become the Civil Rights Act of 1964.