University of Alabama students visit Selma for anniversary of Bloody Sunday

By Alexandra Delrose | Contributing Writer

Over 250 University of Alabama students headed to Selma, Alabama, on Sunday to take part in the march commemorating the 50th anniversary of Bloody Sunday.

UA professor George Daniels said it was great that the University allowed students to come out to Selma to be a part of the march.

“It is great that the UA students had the opportunity to not only learn but become a part of that history,” Daniels said.

Over 40,000 people were recorded at Selma’s 50th bridge-crossing commemoration, some coming from near places and others coming from across the country.

For sophomores Brenayia Jefferson, who is majoring in communication studies, and Brittni Rutledge, who is majoring in psychology and human development, coming to the anniversary was a way for them to learn and expand their horizons.

“When we found out that the University was taking buses to Selma for this anniversary, we both decided we would immediately sign up,” they said. “It was so incredible to be a part of this whole commemoration and learn more about what had happened in Selma 50 years ago.”

Colin Cooper, a junior majoring in public relations, said he was in awe of the number of people who came to the commemoration.

“I have never been to a place so filled with people, except for our football stadium at UA,” Cooper said. “It's amazing to be able to be a part of all of this, and I definitely would come back again.”

Kimberyln Bates, a senior majoring in food and nutrition, said she decided to come with the University to in order to honor her deceased cousin and well-known leader of the civil rights movement, Ralph Abernathy.

“This was my first time in Selma for the anniversary of the march, and it was so meaningful to have the opportunity to keep my cousin's memory alive,” Bates said.

She said being on the Edmund Pettus Bridge made her feel a connection with history.

“As I was crossing over the bridge, I was imagining exactly how it felt like for everyone involved and it just brought chills down my spine,” she said.

Although her cousin has passed, Bates said his and many others memories are living on thanks to the people that came to Selma to take part in this commemoration.

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