Ten years ago, Sybrina Fulton became the mother of a movement. Her 17-year-old son, Trayvon Martin, was shot and killed by George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, while the young Black man was walking back to his father’s house from a convenience store.
“When this first happened, the tragedy of my son, I can absolutely say that I never thought I would be happy again,” Fulton told “CBS Mornings” co-host Gayle King. “I never thought I would smile again. And I asked God for strength because that’s what I heard other people saying about me; how strong I was. It didn’t happen overnight. But he made me strong. It happened.”
Fulton realized there was power in sisterhood. She created the “Circle of Mothers” for women who have lost children or family members to senseless violence.
“I remember I came so broken, but I left so empowered,” Calandrian Simpson-Kemp, the mother of George Kemp, Jr., said of the group’s impact.
“It’s been a sisterhood that we have formed together to encourage each other, to support each other, to cry with each other,” Wanda Johnson, the mother of Oscar Grant, said.
The women have helped each other keep up the fight, said Gwen Carr, the mother of Eric Garner.
“They’re still shooting us. They’re still killing us. But we are still visible. We are still telling them that we’re not quitting. This is our life now,” Carr said.
This year, an annual peace walk and peace talk was held in Martin’s hometown of Miami, Florida, on what would have been his 27th birthday.
And while it’s been 10 years since Martin was killed, Fulton said the pain of losing her son is “still fresh.”
“The hurt is still fresh. The disappointment and sadness is still fresh. So, it seems like it happened recently. And I have to remind myself that it’s been ten years,” she said. “I’m grateful that I did have him for 17 years. But the pain and hurt and bitterness of him not still being here is something that I carry with me every day.”
Watch “Trayvon Martin: 10 Years Later,” a one-hour CBS News special exploring how the senseless shooting of a Florida teenager a decade ago still reverberates in America today, on the CBS News Streaming network and the Smithsonian Channel on Saturday, February 26, at 8 p.m. Eastern and on BET on Monday at 8 p.m. Eastern.
- trayvon martin
Thanks for reading CBS NEWS.
Create your free account or log in
for more features.