The 1963 Tougaloo graduate worked on the campus to affect change in the state during the Civil Rights Movement.
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -
Tougaloo College remembered the life of a graduate who was pivotal in the fight for equality in Mississippi.
Memorial services were held Monday evening for Lawrence Guyot who died Nov. 23 in Mount Rainer, Maryland. The 1963 Tougaloo graduate worked on the campus to affect change in the state during the Civil Rights Movement.
"When I think about Lawrence Guyot and his lifelong commitment to equal justice and civil rights, it began here. So it is so fitting that his life has come full circle," said Tougaloo College Vice President Dr. Delores Bolden Stamps.
The man beaten and jailed in pursuit of freedom was honored at Woodworth Chapel on the college campus. The tribute to the 73-year-old was filled with songs and recollections of the era in which Guyot worked to register voters and organize marches and protests.
"Young people need to acquire the history, need to have an understanding of civil rights history. Our works were justified when Mr. Obama was elected to the presidency of the United States. We felt that we played a role in helping that happen," said friend and veterans of the Mississippi Civil Rights Movement Founder Owen Brooks.
One year after graduating, Guyot led students during the 1964 Freedom Summer Project and later became the chairman of the Mississippi Freedom Democratic Party, which demanded a voice for African Americans in the face of an all white voting delegation at the 1964 Democratic National Convention.
Guyot's wife, Monica, and daughter, Dr. Julie Guyot Diangone, attended the memorial.
"My father would want each of these occasions to be used as a platform to encourage people to struggle to continue to work for freed, for justice, register to vote if you want to honor him," said Guyot Diangone.
Guyot was buried Saturday in his hometown of Pass Christian.
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