In 1958 a woman named Mildred Loving married the man of her dreams, Richard. There was one problem, though. Their marriage was illegal. The reason: she was black and he was white (see Virginia's Racial Integrity Act of 1924). They were forced to leave their home state of Virginia, the only home they ever knew. But real love is blind and boundless. They fought all the way to the Supreme Court. In a 1967 landmark decision, the U.S. Supreme Court unanimously ruled "there can be no doubt that restricting the freedom to marry solely because of racial classifications violates the central meaning of the equal protection clause." The Lovings finally returned to Virginia after the ruling where they lived with their three children until Richard passed away in 1975. His faithful wife, Mildred, has now joined him.
This ruling was rendered just a couple of years before the writer of this blog was born. This writer who would thankfully become the mother of a beautiful African child. My life is possible because of the trailblazers of the 1960s who fought tirelessly, sometimes to the death, and refused to stand down to the ignorant bullies of their day.
So I write this tribute to the Loving family and it is filled with thanks and appreciation for their paving the way for my beautiful and culturally diverse family as well as those of my many dear friends.