The Newark Rebellion monument is blocks away from the old 4th precinct, where the riots and protest began. Over one-hundred people gathered to pay their respects to the 26 lives lost during the uprising.
“To say that there shouldn’t have been rebellions would be like saying there shouldn’t be a hurricane, or there shouldn’t be a tornado, or there shouldn’t be a storm,” said People’s Organization for Progress founder Larry Hamm. “We don’t like hurricanes and tornados and storms but they are part of nature. The uprisings of the 1960’s were a natural response to what people were experiencing in this country.”
A reading of the 26 names on the monument was followed by remarks from their relatives. Kimberly Spellman says the monument should have 27 people on it.
“My mom was pregnant, two months pregnant when those bullets hit her through that window. They don’t talk about it. They say 26 victims but I don’t care, I always say 27. That would have been my little baby brother or sister.”
The monument was erected on the corner of Hayes Street and Springfield Avenue in 1997.