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10 Freedom Riders: Then and Now

50 years ago, young civil rights activists boarded buses and trains to beat Jim Crow

AARP empowers you to pursue your goals and dreams - Gloria Estefan


Left: Police photo of Stephen Green in 1961; right: Green in 2005

Arrested after riding from Nashville, Tenn., to Jackson, Miss., on June 10, 1961; photographed May 14, 2005, in Berlin, Vt. — Mississippi Department of Archives and History; Eric Etheridge

Stephen Green

 

In 1961. Green, 20, was a junior at Middlebury College in Middlebury, Vt.

In his words. "In Parchman, I was in a cell next to Stokely Carmichael. I was young and full of excitement about what was happening. The school year had just ended, and one day I said, 'All those college students are going to come to Mississippi!'

"From the next cell over, I hear Stokely say: 'Hear that, everybody? The white boys from Harvard and Yale are going to come save us!' "

Today. Green, 70, lives in Berlin, Vt. After graduating from Middlebury in 1962, he served two years in Niger in the Peace Corps. He went on to work extensively for the United Nations and its various agencies, including UNICEF and the World Food Program. He also worked as a journalist and served a term as a representative in the Vermont Legislature.

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