Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Memorial Marker to be set for Charles Moore and Henry Dee

Update: The date the memorial marker will be set is changing. The new date will be announced when it is available.

--May 22, 2007

A new memorial marker will be set in Meadville on Memorial Day for Henry Dee and Charles Moore. It will be set and commemorated by their surviving families, near the spot they were abducted by the Ku Klux Klan in 1964. Prepared statements will be given by Thomas Moore, brother of Charles Moore, and Thelma Collins, Henry Dee's sister. Mississippi civil rights
activists and CBC filmmaker David Rigden will be in attendance as well. Hollis Watkins, well-known civil rights activist, will be the master of ceremonies.

Thomas Moore, the brother of Charles Moore, with the vital assistance of Canadian Broadcasting Corporation's David Rigden, sparked the new investigation into these murders of the civil rights era (the bodies were only discovered during efforts to located the bodies of Cheney, Schwerner and Goodman, the subjects of the film "Mississippi Burning"). Ridgen's efforts to produce a film about the murders and Thomas Moore's return to Mississippi seeking answers, under the urging of Ridgen, were the catalysts that engaged the fires of justice and led to the indictment of James Ford Seale, whose trial begins the day after the memorial marker is set.

Moore and Rigden sought and received assistance from Mississippi journalists and ordinary citizens in their probe into the facts of the killings in 1964, and were able to uncover the fact that James Ford Seale was not dead, as had been previously reported (in an apparent effort by Seale's family to keep him hidden in plain sight). In fact, Mr. Seale was not only alive, but still living in the area. Most prominent among those actively assisting Moore in his quest for justice in his brother's murder was the Jackson Free Press, which extensively investigated and covered this unfolding story. One of the almost unknown stories related to this investigation, at least in the main stream media, was the involvement and assistance of many of the readers and bloggers of the Jackson Free Press, who became deeply interested and involved from the beginning and remained involved with the help of Donna Ladd and the Jackson Free Press, who provided, and are still providing, an ongoing and detailed coverage.

During Moore's time back in Mississippi, a dramatic confrontation occurred between him and one of the men once investigated in connection with the murders, as well as James Ford Seale, who is presently awaiting trial for the kidnapping of the two slain men. As things progressed, with help from Mississippians concerned with obtaining justice in this case, federal attorney Dunn Lampton was persuaded to reopen the cold case, not a lightly-undertaken decision, and eventually was able to gather enough evidence to go forward with prosecution in this civil rights era case.

Further details on the memorial service are available in this press release in Adobe Reader format: Dee Moore Memorial

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