LANCASTER – A City Hall ceremony will pay tribute Sunday to the late civil-rights icon Rosa Parks, who visited the Antelope Valley in 1993 and spoke at schools and to civic groups. The mayors of Lancaster and Palmdale and ministers and choir members from various area churches will gather at 3 p.m. Sunday in front of City Hall, 44933 Fern Ave. “She was an American woman who had the right stuff at the right time for what America was going through,” said Lancaster Vice Mayor Henry Hearns, one of the organizers. The keynote speaker will be Pearl Devers, who was California programs director for Pathway to Freedom, Parks’ youth organization. AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREWalnut’s Malik Khouzam voted Southern California Boys Athlete of the Week The event is scheduled to include comments from Palmdale Mayor Jim Ledford and Lancaster Mayor Frank Roberts, speeches by ministers, a performance of a choir featuring members from various churches, and a closing prayer. A bus symbolizing Parks’ famous act of defiance in 1955 will serve as a backdrop. “It is important as Americans to stand as one to remember a woman who sat,” said Chris Johnson, pastor of Grace Chapel. Parks died Monday at age 92 at her home in Detroit. She is credited with sparking the modern civil-rights movement when, on Dec. 1, 1955, she refused to give up her bus seat to a white man while riding on a city bus in Montgomery, Ala. Her subsequent arrest triggered a yearlong boycott of the city’s buses, which in turn led to a federal injunction against segregation on public transportation. Devers, who lives in Palmdale, helped negotiate a movie deal on Parks’ behalf for a 2002 CBS television movie about her life, starring Angela Bassett and Cicely Tyson. “She was just one of the most angelic persons I ever met,” Devers said. “She spoke like an angel. She acted like one. I was really in awe of her presence. She was an amazing lady.” Devers met Parks while working on the 1998 Academy Awards. A longtime friend had called her for help getting Parks tickets to the awards show. “She loved the movie ‘Titanic’ and wanted to meet some of the stars,” Devers said. “She took me out to lunch the next day and asked me to work for her.” Jim Skeen, (661) 267-5743 [email protected] 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!
Sunday ceremony will honor Rosa Parks