Interview with Frederick Leonard
QUESTION 10
INTERVIEWER:

WHY, WHY GET ON THAT BUS AT THAT TIME? WHAT, TAKE YOURSELF BACK TO THAT TIME. GETTING ON THAT BUS AND WHAT WAS IT ALL ABOUT?

Frederick Leonard:

It was about being treated like a human. It was like if you were black you had one right, and that was the right to die, not to live. And we wanted to change that—kill me now, but they won't kill my children. They'll have the right, the doors will open for them, if they don't open for me, they'll open for them. And when, when we boarded the bus, I think Leon, Leon Lovett [sp.?], I think, and he was like, he cornered me and everything and uh, and uh, we were anxious to go, everybody was anxious to go, even though we all felt that people will be, will be killed, everybody felt people would be killed, but everybody wanted to go, to make the ultimate sacrifice for the next generation. And it all seemed so easy when we got to Birmingham, it all seemed so easy because, you know, we said-– nobody will get killed, we have police protection and everything is just fine and lovely. We're going to integrate this place, and that's, that's just, just A B C, 1 2 3, just like that. But when we got to Montgomery, it was a whole different story.