Edmund Pettus Charles Mauldin recalls ‘Bloody Sunday’ attack on John Lewis at Selma memorial
There had been marches before then uh sporadic marches and they had sort of a sporadic effect, but that was a real beginning: the mass movement. As far as students were concerned, we turned out hudson high school and many of the surrounding high schools and we began the march and we didn’t stop eventually to the past of the 1965 voter rights act. As a student leader, i got a chance to do to have many meetings. I remember meeting um with dr king and john in this very building in the back rooms there, where the decision to a march to montgomery was made uh, ct and andy and hosea and devil, and a lot of other people were there. When we one of the things that many people don’t know is that i was close enough to john on bloody sunday, i was number seven. I was in the third line, but maybe number five or six, depending on which way you’re counting and when um colonel cloud. Basically told us that that was an illegal march and that we should disband and come back to our churches or go to our homes. I think ct said well give us some time to pray. We began to kneel down and at that time time we knelt down the state.
Troopers took their billy. Clubs like this began to push us back, and that was a time that, and people have always said that john um was basically attacked.
Then i was close enough to john to hear that crack i’ll, never forget it, and i was, i was sensitive about bringing up with your family, but i think there are little things that i knew that i’d like to share with you, although we knew that that Was a tragic time we were all soldiers, we were non violent soldiers and we knew that john was down, but we were happy to find out that within a week or so he was on the on the march of montgomery, and that was the type of person. John was and i’ve heard another thing i want to share john always i’ve heard him say several times on tv that he’s not sure he got how he got from the bridge to uh really back to this church and um. I was close enough and knew about what type of resources we had to know that there were very few resources, so probably ace, anderson’s funeral home probably picked john up and for some reason they brought him here and when he got here, he was sitting up here And worth alone, who had been a many in the military uh had um been sent to selma early to scout some to see if someone would actually be ready for uh some type of movement here and uh worth long saw that john had had a concussion.
He was afraid that he that he needed to have his legs lifted so that he would not get a blood clot.
So he did that, but really upon closer looking at john he and willie c robertson, willie c robertson was the first person. Probably she had blood for the selma movement down at carter. Drugstore, they came in, got john, took them out to took him out to the street where the state troopers were, and they said we have a soldier down and we request permission to take him to the hospital. And that is how john got from here to the hospital, and that is probably what saved john’s life but um. I hope i’m sharing something that you’ll appreciate. But i was sensitive about doing this because i know that this is a time of great reflection.