George Floyd Laid To Rest
By: Don Bryant 6-9-2020
HOUSTON—it was an emotional four-hours as family, friends, politicians, and celebrities paid their final tributes at the funeral of George Floyd. More than 500 mourners attended the service, whom many described George Floyd as a father and brother, athlete and neighborhood mentor.
His death has sparked a global response to police brutality and racial prejudice in America. As the funeral began at noon, the New York Stock Exchange went silent for eight minutes, 46 seconds — the length of time a Minneapolis police officer held Mr. Floyd’s neck under his knee before he died.
Floyd, 46, was born in North Carolina but grew up in the Cuney Homes housing complex in Houston’s Third Ward.
Cuney Homes, nicknamed, “the bricks”, is where some residents call themselves, the “brickboys.” In one of the video tributes played at Tuesday’s funeral, Floyd is shown wearing a hat with the name brickboys engraved on it.
He was a 1993 graduate of Jack Yates High School, where he played on the basketball team as a 6-foot-6 power forward. And he was a father of five and grandfather of two.
There were a number of speakers at the funeral including:
A collection of family members and guests attended George Floyd's funeral on Tuesday at The Fountain of Praise Church in Houston, TX.
Photo credit: David J. Phillip/Pool Photo via USA TODAY Network
U.S. Representative Al Green
“We have a duty, responsibility, and obligation not to allow this to be like other times. We must make sure this does not happen again.”
U.S. Representative Sheila Jackson Lee
“I don’t know if I’ll ever get 8 minutes and 46 seconds out of my DNA. We’re not going to sit down like Rosa Parks said, until justice comes.”
Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner
“As I speak right now, the city attorney is drafting an executive order, an order that I will sign when I get back to City Hall," Turner said. “What that order will say is that in this city, we will ban chokeholds and strangleholds. In this city, we will require de-escalation. In this city, you have to give a warning before you shoot. In this city, you have a duty to intervene."
Floyd’s Niece: Brooke Williams
“As long as I’m breathing, justice will be served. Laws need to be changed, no more hate crimes, please."
Rev. Al Sharpton, National Action Network
“This was not just a tragedy, it was a crime.”
Steve Wells, South Main Baptist Church, Houston, Texas
“At my church, it is easy to dismiss as politics the economics of hundreds of years of systemic racism.
But not talking and not acting is the path to destruction. We can watch that on the news every night and ask if that is the future we want for ourselves.”
Rev. Al Sharpton delivered the eulogy for George Floyd's funeral services in Houston on Tuesday.
Photo credit: David J. Phillip/Pool Photo
Wells continued, “If I could just have the privilege, I would like to say a word to white churches. We are better than we used to be, but we are not as good as we ought to be. That is not good enough, which means you have to take up the work of racial justice.
Racism did not start in our lifetimes but racism can end in our lifetime.”
The funeral concluded six days of mourning for Floyd in three cities: Raeford, North Carolina, near where he was born; Houston, where he grew up; and Minneapolis, where he died.