Civil Rights Champion Johnnie Carr Remembered Tell Me More remembers longtime civil rights activist Johnnie Rebecca Carr, who died Friday at the age of 97. Carr was a childhood friend of Rosa Parks, and led the Montgomery Improvement Association for decades. The organization was formed after Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus, sparking the beginning of the Montgomery bus boycott.

Civil Rights Champion Johnnie Carr Remembered

Civil Rights Champion Johnnie Carr Remembered

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Tell Me More remembers longtime civil rights activist Johnnie Rebecca Carr, who died Friday at the age of 97. Carr was a childhood friend of Rosa Parks, and led the Montgomery Improvement Association for decades. The organization was formed after Parks refused to give up her seat on a bus, sparking the beginning of the Montgomery bus boycott.

MICHEL MARTIN, host:

We want to take a few moments to remember the life of a long-time civil rights activist, Johnnie Rebecca Carr. She passed away Friday night in Montgomery, Alabama. Carr was a childhood friend of Rosa Parks. After Parks was arrested for refusing to give up her bus seat to a white man in 1955, sparking the historic Montgomery bus boycott, Carr helped organize carpools.

That same year the Montgomery Improvement Association was formed, and Carr became a leading member. She succeeded Martin Luther King, Jr. as the group's president in 1967, a post she held until her death.

Carr continued to speak with groups about civil rights, activism and personal responsibility well into her 90s. Here's a tape of Mrs. Carr speaking to students at Tuskegee Public Elementary School during a black history program.

Ms. JOHNNIE REBECCA CARR (Civil Rights Activist): Some people dream of being high and dream of great things and all that. I am only going to dream of being a soldier, because I love that old hymn that says to serve the present age, my calling to fulfill, o may it all my power engage to do my master's will.

MARTIN: Johnnie Rebecca Carr died in a Montgomery hospital on Friday. She was 97 years old.

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