Linda Brown, whose actions helped end United States school segregation, dies at 76

Brown third from left was one of six children involved in the civil rights lawsuit that challenged racial segregation in public schools

Brown third from left was one of six children involved in the civil rights lawsuit that challenged racial segregation in public schools

Linda Brown, who was at the center of Brown v. Board of Education Supreme court case, died Sunday in her hometown of Topeka, Kansas.

But it began with Brown's father Oliver, who tried to enroll her at the Sumner School, an all-white elementary school in Topeka just a few blocks from the Browns' home.

Sherrilyn Ifill, president of the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, in a statement remarked, "Linda Brown is one of that special band of heroic young people who, along with her family, courageously fought to end the ultimate symbol of white supremacy - racial segregation in public schools".

On 17 May 1954, the Supreme Court ruled unanimously that separating black and white children was unconstitutional because it denied black children the 14th amendment guarantee of equal protection under the law.

"Linda Brown's life reminds us that sometimes the most unlikely people can have an incredible impact and that by serving our community we can truly change the world", Colyer said.

The organisation did not provide details on what caused her death. Linda Brown and her sister founded in 1988 the Brown Foundation for Educational Equity, Excellence and Research.

Her sister, Cheryl Brown Henderson, confirmed the death to The Topeka Capital-Journal.

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Refusing to accept the refusal, Linda's father sued and the case kept going up until the 1954 Brown vs Board of Education decision by the Supreme Court. "She stands as an example of how ordinary schoolchildren took center stage in transforming this country".

Linda Carol Brown was born February 20, 1943, according to the funeral home. The Supreme Court would outline the process of school desegregation in Brown II in 1955, but it would take years for schools across the nation to fully comply.

Nor were her parents dissatisfied with the black school she was attending. They all challenged the constitutionality of racial segregation in public schools.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein of California said the Supreme Court decision "loudly proclaimed" that separate is not equal, and that today "we remember how far we've come in one lifetime and how far we have to go".

President Dwight D Eisenhower deployed American soldiers when the Arkansas governor blocked African-American students from being integrated into an all-white high school in the state's capital Little Rock in 1957. When her father joined the lawsuit, neighborhoods in Topeka were partially integrated, Brown said in a 1985 interview for the documentary series "Eyes on the Prize: America's Civil Rights Years".

When photographers swarmed her classroom after the decision, on the first day of school in September 1954, she said her classmates thought it "was very funny" they were taking pictures of her. It is situated along the Kansas River in the central part of Shawnee County, in northeast Kansas, in the Central United States.

NAIJ.com previously reported that Stephen Hawking, the acclaimed brightest star in the firmament of science, whose insights shaped modern cosmology and inspired global audiences in the millions, died at age 76.

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