Friday, July 28, 2017

The Grey Panthers and Memphis History

Exploring Memphis with MCIL’s Grey Panthers

Bobbie Fields
By Bobbie Fields
The Grey Panthers spent a fun filled afternoon at the Benjamin Hooks library on Poplar getting to know all about how politics, race and the press played a major role in some of our cities major events.

The Grey Panthers are a group organized with the Memphis Center for Independent Living to facilitate peer relationships and social interaction for people 55 and older. The Grey Panthers confront issues of dealing with disability, health, finances and civic life.

The keynote speaker for the event was former newspaper man, channel 3 commentator and Author Otis Sanford (Boss Crump and King Willie). His book gives a detailed account of how these men influenced our communities, city and even our way of thinking today.

Racism was a major concern during the turn of the last century in Memphis and Mr. Sanford told the group about many issues 100 years ago. Some of the key players in our city political history were Mayor Henry Loeb, Mayor Wyatt Chandler, and Mayor Robert “Dick” Hackett, Mayor Willie “king” Harrington, The Crumps and The Fords.

Grey Panthers gather at the event

Events like this one is only a small sample of what The Grey Panthers are all about. We try to keep our seniors informed about health issues, our city and community while having fun. If you are age 55 and up we encourage you to come see and listen for yourself. We meet every 2nd Friday of the month from 10:30 am to 12:00 pm at The Memphis Center for Independent Living, 1633 Madison Ave. For more information please contact Jerry Gamble at (901) 726-6404 ext.122 or and Bobbie Fields (901) 726-6404 ext. 112 or