A.Z. Young — We have not forgotten

Published 3:56 am Wednesday, March 21, 2018

We have not forgotten a tall, dark and handsome black man, who was living the good life, with fine clothes, big cars, good jobs, and money in his pocket. A man who was willing to give up that good life, to fight for the rights of his people and to champion the civil rights movement in Bogalusa.

We have not forgotten the man that fought bravely in World War II. After fighting for the rights and freedom of his country, he got home, and had to fight for the rights and freedom of his people.

Young did not talk that talk, but he walked that walk. He walked from Bogalusa to the steps of the courthouse in Franklinton. He walked from Bogalusa to the steps of the Louisiana State Capitol. Young marched, boycotted, went on strike, and protested, but he didn’t stop there.

With the help of Charles Simms and other Deacons of Defense, he provided protection for the black citizens in Bogalusa when no one else would, and Young made sure that students got jobs in the summer.

A.Z. Young got the million dollar preschool program called “HIPPY” placed in the elementary schools in Bogalusa. He was instrumental in reducing discriminative practices in the hospital and health unit in Louisiana.

He fought for every state program that was beneficial to the education and advancement of the black and white citizens of Bogalusa. He fought just as hard for a white man that needed help as he did for a black man.

He loved and respected Gov. Edwin Edwards, because Edwards loved all citizens of Louisiana and both men believed that all men should have liberty and justice.

Theresa P. Keller