Navy Ship Christened in Honor of Former NAACP Field Secretary

Civil rights martyr, former NAACP Field Secretary, and World War II veteran Medgar Evers was honored posthumously with a U.S. Navy ship christened in his name. The first ship named after an American civil rights hero, the 689-foot dry cargo ship was christened at General Dynamics NASSCO on San Diego Bay. 

The ship was christened on November 12, when Evers' widow Myrlie Evers-Williams smashed a bottle of champagne against the ship's hull.

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Said Williams-Evers of the moment, “I will not have to go to bed ever again wondering whether anyone will remember who Medgar Evers is.”

Inducted into the U.S. Army in 1943, Evers fought in France and Germany before returning to U.S. soil three years later. Upon his return, Evers soon found that despite fighting for his country as part of the Battle of Normandy, his skin color nonetheless invited discrimination as he and five friends were forced away at gunpoint from a local election. Evers resented this mistreatment, and went on to fight discrimination as the first NAACP field officer in Mississippi.

Among those in attendance to commemorate Evers were NAACP President & CEO Benjamin Todd Jealous, NAACP Chairman Emeritus Julian Bond, civil rights leader Vernon Jordan, actor Obba Babatunde and other NAACP board members & leadership.

For more information on Medgar Evers and his civil rights legacy, please click here.

For photos from the event, please visit our Facebook page.