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National Briefing / Mississippi

Navy names ship for civil rights leader

October 10, 2009|Times Wire Reports

The widow of Medgar Evers fought back tears as Navy Secretary Ray Mabus, a former Mississippi governor, announced he's naming a new Navy supply ship for the slain civil rights pioneer.

"I think of those who will serve on this ship and those who will see it in different parts of the world. And perhaps they, too, will come to know who Medgar Evers was and what he stood for," Myrlie Evers-Williams said at Jackson State University, where Mabus made the announcement.

Evers was Mississippi field secretary of the National Assn. for the Advancement of Colored People when he was assassinated outside his Jackson home on June 12, 1963. He was 37.

The 689-foot Medgar Evers vessel will be built at General Dynamics NASSCO in San Diego, and Mabus said construction would take as long as two years. The ship will deliver food, ammunition and parts to other ships at sea.

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