Interview with Sheyann Webb


Sheyann Webb:

On Bloody Sunday, I was a very frightened child, simply because the night before Bloody Sunday, there was a mass meeting. And at that particular mass meeting, there was speeches about, several speeches about Bloody Sunday, and some possibility—. On Bloody Sunday I was a very frightened child, I think that was one of the most scariest days of my life, and I'll never forget that day simply because I saw some things that I never thought I would see even though I had heard that some of these things had happened, and some of them may happen, but I had no idea that they will happen, but it did. And I saw it, and I'll never forget it. I remember the night prior to Bloody Sunday, there was a mass meeting and there was several speakers talking about what our procedures would be for the march for Bloody Sunday, and it would be possible that we would not be successful with that march. But I was still determined as a child to march and even after going home to bed that night, I couldn't really sleep well. And I remember that very well because after I had come home from that meeting, I asked my mother, would she march, and I told her that I was going to march anyway, and she did tell me if I marched I will be whipped. But I was still determined to march and on that next day, I came out and rallied with the rest of the people to gather for the march and I remember telling Rachel, well, Rachel's parents had informed her that she couldn't march and she was afraid and I was too, but I was still determined. And I remember getting ready to get in line and I was with Mrs. Moore, Margaret Moore, and I told Mrs. Moore that I was afraid and she told me, she said, don't be afraid. She was always a good inspiration for me, and it was like my heart was beating real fast as if this was my last time, but I was still determined. And I remember walking, and as we got closer and closer to the bridge, my eyes began to water, that's just how afraid I was. And I wanted to turn back and I didn't want to turn back. And I said to myself, if they can go, I can go too. And I remember as we approached the bridge, I was getting frightened more and more and as we got to the top of the bridge, I could see hundreds of policemen, state troopers, billy clubs, dogs and horses and I began to just cry. And I remember the ministers who were at the front of the line saying, "Kneel down to pray." And I knelt down and I said to myself, "Lord, help me." And once we had gotten up, all I could remember was outbursts of tear gas, and I saw people being beaten and I began to just try to run home as fast as I could. And as I began to run home, I saw horses behind me, and I will never forget a Freedom Fighter picked me up, Hosea Williams, and I told him to put me down he wasn't running fast enough. And I ran, and I ran and I ran. It was like I was running for my life. Until I got home, and as I approached my door, my mother and father, my brothers and sisters were waiting there for me because they had no idea that I was gonna to do it. But I did it. And I ran up the stairs, I was frightened. And I remember my mother and father coming up and trying to calm me down, and I did later. But even so, I still wanted to come back to this church, you could hear sirens, you could hear people crying, you could hear many cries of pain, like oppressed people. And I was still determined to come back to Brown's Chapel Church, and I was willing to go again and that night I wrote my funeral arrangements. And that determination came from Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It was a day that I'll never forget, and I'm really glad that I had that experience, even though, that I really wouldn't have wanted it to be that way, but it has really shown me a lot of life period.


Sound Roll 1535


Camera Roll 578