In reply to a Leada DeVaney article, I would like to give some true information.
She was right in saying Bobby Frank Cherry looked like someone's grandfather. He raised or helped raise 16-18 children, many children and great-grandchildren. He and his wife were together 28 years.
Right again about the false charges brought by an ex-stepdaughter. The F.B.I had been to his home many times in Texas, but never had any evidence that he had anything to do with the tragedy in Birmingham. He was home most of the night with his wife who had surgery and was diagnosed with cancer. Earlier he had gone to work on some George Wallace campaign signs. A very dear cousin sat with his wife to let him go out of the house a little while. He was recovering from a broken back and had to wear a back brace. He worked at two jobs and had a television repair shop to feed his family.
He was not living in a broken down trailer when he was arrested. They had a nice home on a lake and an acre of land. He always had a nice clean home except when he lived with one wife he divorced for the way she treated her children.
The justice in Alabama isn't justice – it is called railroading. All the witnesses for the prosecution were discredited, but Mr. (Rev. Roosevelt) Woods said the first day of the trial "this white man is getting too big for his britches. If he is found innocent, there will be a hot time in Burningham (sic) tonight." To me, that was very much a threat. He tried to create problems from day one to intimidate everyone and he did most. But his followers are few. We talked to some wonderful colored people who said they believed Bobby was innocent but would be found guilty in Birmingham because people were afraid to stand up for what they believed because threats to family and job. These "preachers" are racist and trouble makers and Birmingham will continue to go down until the people of Alabama get their backbone straight and fight for right.
DeVaney should take a trip to Texas to see how Bobby Cherry lived. Go ask his neighbors what kind of man he was. As for him using the "N" word, when he was growing up, blacks were called "n…..," negro, colored, black and now African Americans. Why not just plain Americans and settle on that so people will know what to say without offending someone.
Bobby Cherry was convicted on who he met 40 plus years ago. It hasn't been said he wasn't even in the Klan when the bomb went off. No one has heard his story. You have only heard what the "agitators" and news media have put out. The agitators are really trying to cover their own tracks for something they were supposed to do and didn't do. The explosion was their own fault and they will be exposed.
An article appeared in the Hartselle Enquirer announcing the Finis J. Self, Chapter 2212-Military Order of the Purple Heart – Hartselle chapter inviting the public along with other military organizations in the area to a flag presentation on Monday, May 27, Memorial Day.
I talked to the mayor, who said he'd be out of town. He should have sent someone to cover for him.
This was for a veteran's Memorial Day program to honor all veterans and P.O.W./M.I.A. A new American flag along with a new P.O.W./M.I.A flag was presented to the City of Hartselle.
This was an "honor" to have received two beautiful flags, but undoubtedly the people in the city don't read their newspaper for something as important as this. Just think, had all the veterans not won the past world wars and other wars, why we wouldn't be here to talk about it. Perhaps we would still be walking behind the mule or riding in the wagon, or just maybe speaking Japanese or German.
It burns me up to hear someone say, "what a good holiday, or what a big sale so-and-so is going to have." For God's sake, it's a "veterans memorial," not a holiday.
Why is it that there were other cities on either side of Hartselle having their memorials the same day, but at a different time of day. Each city has an American Legion, Disabled American Veterans, Veterans of Foreign Wars.
I'm ashamed to know at the program there wasn't one member of either of these organizations. Two officers of the M.O.P.H were there along with a Mrs. Smith of the American Legion-Ladies Auxiliary, a Mr. and Mrs. R. Kreps of Cullman, along with the guest speaker, George F. Mills of Decatur, a P.O.W in Germany during World War II.
He is a friend that I hadn't seen since the war.
Just let your mind go back a few years. Picture a P.O.W. sitting in water up to his neck and not able to lie down while sleeping, or tied to a pole in a bamboo cage, with not much to eat and no letters from home.
So long as I can get to a memorial, I'll be there. The next veterans program will be Nov. 11. I hope to see you there.
George E. Mann,
Commander, Chapter 2212
Military Order of the Purple Heart