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Stephen Lawrence's Mother Embraces Trayvon Martin's Parents

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(Any familiar with the Stephen Lawrence case? So many parallels in the cases of Stephen Lawrence and Trayvon Martin. So many similarities in these cases being symptoms of a much larger, institutional/systemic problem. The Lawrence and Martin families recently met.)

Source: The Sun: http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/4307008/Stephen-Lawrences-mum-welcomes-shot-Trayvon-Martins-parents.html

Stephen Lawrence's mum welcomes shot Trayvon Martin's parents

By NEIL MILLARD

Last Updated: 11th May 2012

THE mother of murdered black teenager Stephen Lawrence yesterday showed his London memorial to the parents of a black boy shot dead in the US, telling them: “I know where you’re coming from.”Doreen Lawrence held an emotional meeting with Trayvon Martin's mum Sybrina Fulton and dad Tracy Martin after writing to them to express support.

The 17-year-old’s fatal shooting in February sparked uproar in America, taking racial tensions there to a 20-year high after police initially failed to hold a suspect for questioning.

But not before national protests at which demonstrators' placards read “I am Trayvon Martin” while waving bags of Skittles sweets – the only thing the teen had on him when he was shot.

Even President Obama joined in the campaign, saying: “If I had a son, he would look like Trayvon.” One of the many touching emails the Martin family received from supporters in Britain came from Doreen Lawrence whose crusade for justice saw two of her son’s killers jailed for life this year.

She said: “As soon as I heard the news about Trayvon’s death I wanted to stretch a hand over the water. I understood what they were going through.

“One minute your son is walking and communicating, the next he is dead. Someone is responsible for that."

Doreen told Tracy: “It’s 19 years since Stephen was killed and it was only this January that two were sentenced for his murder so it’s been a long struggle. I sort of know where you’re coming from.”

Trayvon’s parents came to the UK to thank the British public for their support and toured the Stephen Lawrence centre in Deptford with Trayvon’s older brother Jahvaris. It funds courses in architecture — the field Stephen wanted to work in — in Britain, South Africa and Jamaica and provides access to education and employment programmes. Trayvon’s family were so impressed they may set up a similar legacy in the US.

Tracy said: “Doreen is an inspiration to your country. Her love and support has turned tragedy to something positive.”

She added: "Any parent would have been proud to have either Trayvon or Stephen as their son. Our boys changed the world.“I say to myself even if Trayvon had fulfilled his dream of becoming an astronaut maybe 1,000 people would have known about him. Through his death, the world knows him. His name will be etched in books for ever.

“It’s the same with Stephen.”

George Zimmerman, 28, has pleaded not guilty to second-degree murder over Trayvon’s death and is awaiting trial.

The Metropolitan Police were branded “institutionally racist” after failing to investigate 18-year-old Stephen’s death properly. He was murdered by a racist gang in Eltham, south London, in 1993.Gary Dobson 36, and David Norris, 35, were jailed for life in January after being convicted.

Police are trying to bring another “three or four” of his killers to justice.

Find out more information about Doreen’s campaign and donate at stephenlawrence.org.uk or facebook.com/stephenlawrencecharitabletrust.

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