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No reminders of slavery wanted

In the mid-1960s, I was involved in a women’s group called the Denton Women’s Interracial Fellowship. We created this group to aid in public school integration where kids of color would be sent to the formerly all-white schools in Denton. We wanted them to know some white kids before they left the comfort of their old school where they had all been all of their lives. Some of us helped to tutor these kids to give them a head start.

I didn’t know any women of color at that time, but some of the older ladies invited their housekeepers to coffee. At first, they came reluctantly wondering what these white women were up to. Others came as they heard about the idea. We kept the membership at 50/50 black and white members.

We went places together and had a monthly meeting at one of our homes. We couldn’t meet in the black community on rainy days because their streets were dirt, not paved; thus was created an added project: getting the streets paved. We did it.

We formed lasting friendships that are still alive and well today. I met so many lovely ladies and their families. Because of these now forever friends, I want no reminders of slavery or mistreatment to be in our vision.

That statue on the Square was not placed after the Civil War to honor Confederate soldiers. It was put up during the Jim Crow era in the early 20th century to intimidate persons of color.

Out of great respect for my dear friends, I ask you to please take down this statue.

Pat Cheek,

Denton

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