Kudos to Mayor Perkins, City Council for making March 15 F.D. Reese Day

Published 9:51 am Thursday, February 11, 2021

The Selma City Council and Mayor James Perkins Jr. gave the biggest tribute to Civil Rights Icon Dr. Frederick D. Reese on Tuesday night.

At its City Council meeting, Perkins and the council unanimously voted to make March 15 F.D. Reese Day. Starting this year and going forward, March 15 will be known as F.D. Reese Day. Reese already has a street named after him.

It is a fitting tribute to a man who was a key leader in the Civil Rights movement and helped changed the course of history. Reese was born and raised in Selma, spent most of his life as a Queen City resident.

Reese was also a member of the Courageous Eight and invited Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. to Selma to join the fight for equal voting rights for all.

The work of Reese and others led to the Selma to Montgomery marches and the eventual passing of the Voting Rights Act of 1965, that got eventually signed by President Lyndon B. Johnson.

Reese, who died April 5, 2018 in Atlanta at the age of 88. It’s ironic that Reese died a day after the 50th anniversary of King’s assassination. King was killed in Memphis on April 4, 1968.

Reese was more than a Civil Rights legend. Reese was an educator in Dallas County for over 50 years and served as pastor of Ebenezer Missionary Baptist Church for half a century.

Perkins and the City Council should be commended for honoring Dr. Reese. His legacy will never be forgotten.