A Macomb Board of Education member said he will work on a project to commemorate civil rights activist C.T. Vivian, who grew up in Macomb.
Vivian received the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President Barack Obama during a ceremony on November 20. The medal is the nation’s highest civilian honor.
The school board’s Jim LaPrad said Vivian attended three Macomb schools – Lincoln, Edison, and the senior high school.
“He has always spoken favorably about his experience growing up in Macomb,” LaPrad said. “He appreciated his education here in Macomb.”
LaPrad would like to post in each of the buildings a commemorative photograph of Vivian wearing the medal. The photos would be accompanied by an explanation of the honor.
“I think that would be incredible for our students to be able to see. When they walk into a school every day see the fact that, wow, this is one of our graduates,” LaPrad said. “It’s phenomenal to have a graduate from our Macomb schools who’s received that honor.”
LaPrad said only around 500 people have received the Presidential Medal of Freedom since President John F. Kennedy announced the first recipients in 1963.
LaPrad said the medal commemorates Vivian’s lifetime of working for social justice. He hoped Vivian’s efforts inspire students to work hard and look for places to serve.
LaPrad said he will work with Superintendent Patrick Twomey to secure funding for the project. He hoped to have the photos and plaques in place by the beginning of next school year.