Today’s inauguration ceremonies for the president and vice president begin at 8:30 a.m. PST (after two hours of music), with a special moment for the Inland Valley at 8:35, as a Claremont resident, Myrlie Evers-Williams, gives the invocation.
She was chairwoman of the NAACP from 1995 to 1998 and the widow of civil rights leader Medgar Evers. After his June 12, 1963 slaying, and the second unsuccessful trial of his accused murderer, she and her children moved from Mississippi to Claremont so she could attend Pomona College. She lived here for several years, and I believe some of her children still do. And a couple of years ago, she returned to live part-time at the Mt. San Antonio Gardens retirement home.
Her presence at the ceremony is symbolic due to today also being Martin Luther King Jr. Day and 2013 being considered the 50th anniversary of the civil rights movement.
She is the first woman and the first layperson to give the invocation. How about that! Here’s a Q&A with her from Religion News Service about today.
* A video of her invocation is here.