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Everyday Heroes

Gordon Parks, Extraordinary Photojournalist

Gordon ParksGordon Parks, best-remembered as a gifted photojournalist, was also an author, composer and film director, achieving remarkable success in each field. His journalistic platform in Life magazine permitted him to affect the world he covered—from gang life in Harlem to poverty in Brazil. Parks’ coverage of the Civil Rights movement in the 1960s provided Life readers with a unique and important perspective on the struggle against racism.

Gordon Parks

Morrie Turner: Creator of Wee Pals Comic Strip

Morris “Morrie” Turner grew up dreaming of being a cartoonist, yet he knew the profession was dominated by white men. Despite that, Turner went on to create and publish the first integrated comic strip.  He hoped that creating a strip featuring children of various ethnic backgrounds might attract new readers and change some minds.  That’s how Wee Pals was born.

Morrie Turner

Harlem Hellfighter Hero: Henry Johnson

Harlem HellfighterThe Harlem Hellfighters were a heroic bunch from the beginning, but this World War I infantry regiment had one man who stood out from all the rest: Private Henry Lincoln Johnson (1897-1929), a former railroad porter.  Johnson and fellow soldier Robert Needham were on night sentry duty when the base was attacked. Johnson and Needham repelled the German raid; Needham was badly injured early on and Johnson managed to keep him from being taken prisoner.

Harlem Hellfighter
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