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Pride Source Between the Lines

Student Activist Relives 1961 Freedom Rides
PBS Selects MSU Junior for 50th Anniversary Tour
By Tara Cavanaugh

Erica Shekell is about to go on the ride of a lifetime.

The Michigan State University junior was selected among 1,000 applicants to take part in the PBS American Experience 2011 Freedom Ride. The ride celebrates the 50th anniversary of the 1961 Freedom Rides, during which a diverse group of men and women peacefully protested racism and segregation by riding together on busses through the Deep South. On their well-publicized journey, they faced violence, discrimination and even imprisonment. Their story is the subject of a PBS documentary, “Freedom Riders,” that will air on PBS’s American Experience program on May 16 at 9 p.m. Read more…


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