Gov. Phil Murphy has ordered U.S. and New Jersey flags to be flows at half-staff in memory of civil rights leader John Lewis, a longtime Georgia congressman.
“For 60 years, from his seat among the Freedom Riders to his seat in the U.S. House of Representatives, John Lewis stirred the soul of America to live up to our greatest ideals of equality,” Murphy said. “In each and every action, large and small, John Lewis was the conscience of our nation. When he spoke, it was with authority and compassion.”
Flags will be lowered today and remain at half-staff until Lewis’ internment.
Murphy’s executive order details Lewis’ history as the chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), his organization of sit-ins at segregated lunch counters, bus boycotts, and other nonviolent protests during his more than six decades as a civil rights advocate, and the details of Lewis being beaten on “Bloody Sunday” in 1965 when he led 600 marchers in a peaceful protest across the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma, Alabama.
“Our nation and world mourn the passing of a true American icon. I mourn the passing of a role model,” said Murphy. “And, in our sorrow, let us commit to carrying on his work, and building upon the tremendous legacy which is John Lewis’ lasting gift to us all.”Phil Murphy EO-167 John Lewis