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American pacifist James Zwerg after being beaten by a mob in Montgomery, Alabama in 1960 as part of the Freedom Riders. Zwerg volunteered to leave the bus first upon arriving in Montgomery, knowing he’d be the blunt of the violent crowd’s aggression. He would have died that day if an anonymous black man hadn’t stepped in and saved his life by deflecting the mob’s attention to himself.
Heartbreaking moment in history. Jesse & Ruth Owens arrive home from the 1936 Berlin Olympics. Son of a sharecropper and grandson of slaves, Owens won a record 4 gold medals in the very presence of Adolph Hitler. Owens said, “When I came back to my native country... I couldn’t ride in the front of the bus. I had to go to the back door. I couldn’t live where I wanted. I wasn’t invited to shake hands with Hitler, but I wasn’t invited to the White House to shake hands with the President, either.”