On February 26, 2012, 17-year-old Trayvon Martin was probably wearing his hooded sweatshirt to protect himself from the drizzling rain.
Now, we wear the same hooded sweatshirt to protect all children and teenagers like Trayvon from the steady downpour of gunfire.
One hoodie, one teen, one cause, a whole nation.
On that fateful night, Trayvon’s sweatshirt turned into a movement for justice. A year later, that hooded sweatshirt serves as our fists and our voices to fight the injustices that surrounded Trayvon’s death. Now, we don our hoods to make a statement that the Zimmerman’s of the world will pay.
But most importantly, as the anniversary of Trayvon’s death comes upon us, we wear our hoodies in remembrance of a life that was taken away too soon.
Just days after his death last year at the hands of neighborhood watch George Zimmerman, communities gathered across the nation to support Trayvon’s parents in the fight to implicate his murderer. People marched through streets, rallies were organized, and students wore hoodies for solidarity, soldiers on the front line of the battlefields. All of us could have been Trayvon. Just a teen walking home from a store. All of us were Trayvon.
The message, which transcended race, age and gender, was evident in the riveting pictures taken after Trayvon’s death. Pictures that showed communities coming together for one cause. Here are some of those lasting memories that GlobalGrind won’t forget.
Trayvon’s parents, Sybrina Fulton and Tracy Martin, are surrounded by supporters as they pray at the Million Hoodies March on March 21, 2012 in New York City.
Sybrina Fulton (C), mother of slain teenager Trayvon Martin, hugs a supporter at the Million Hoodies March on March 21, 2012 in New York City.
College student Jajuan Kelley covers his mouth with a Skittles wrapper as he stands in a crowd of thousands rallying at the Georgia State Capitol in memory of Trayvon Martin. The unarmed teen was carrying a pack of the candy and an ice tea when George Zimmerman pursued him because he looked “suspicious.”
A sea of hoodies chants for Trayvon at a March 21, 2012 rally in Union Square during a ‘Million Hoodie March’ in Manhattan.
On March 28, 2012, people, along with New York City Council members, attend a press conference to call for justice for Trayvon’s death.
In one of the most poignant pictures taken to remember Trayvon Martin, a member of the New York City Council holds a bag of Skittles during a press conference on the steps of City Hall March 28, 2012 in New York City.
In New York, a supporter for Trayvon tells it like it really is.
New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (C) wears a hoodie while attending a press conference to call for justice on March 28, 2012
New York City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (C) speaks during a press conference at a Trayvon Martin rally.
In Atlanta, GA., Jordan Miller, 10, holds a handmade sign alongside thousands of protesters rallying at the Georgia State Capitol in memory of the slain Florida teenager.
Marc Watkins holds an iced tea and Skittles in his hand, as thousands of protestors rally at the Georgia State Capitol.
In Sanford, Fl, where Trayvon was killed, many children wear hoodies in solidarity for slain teenager Trayvon Martin and march together through the streets on March 26, 2012.
A woman holds up a sign at a New York protest to put George Zimmerman behind bars.
The rallies to support Trayvon continued for months after his death. On April 10, 2012, protestors wearing hoodies gathered in support of the teen at a demonstration in New York City.
In Miami, Fl., Vanessa Nunez gathered in front of Florida Senator Marco Rubio’s office at an April 9, 2012 protest to ask him to retract his support for the “Stand Your Ground” gun law.
South Florida residents and activists gather and pray in Miami’s Liberty City neighborhood during a rally in Miami, Florida.
Briley Garth wears a hoodie at a rally for Trayvon Martin in Decatur, Ala., March 28, 2012.
In the New York State Senate, a group of legislators, including Eric Adams, a retired NYPD officer who represents parts of Brooklyn including Crown Heights, and Kevin Parker, wore hoodies in the chamber to send their message in a unconventional way.
The Miami Heat even got involved. LeBron James tweeted and Facebooked a picture of the entire Heat squad with their hoodies up for Trayvon. Both LeBron and Dwyane Wade were Trayvon’s favorite athletes.
As the anniversary of Trayvon’s death draws near, so did his 18th birthday. The family of the slain teen gathered with supporters in Miami for a Day of Remembrance.
Trayvon would have been 18 on Feb. 5, 2013…just two weeks before he was killed.
We continue to remember Trayvon and we will continue the fight for his justice.
PHOTO SOURCE: GETTY