Emmett Till Memorial Center in Summit. (Photos by Carol McGowan)

Emmett Till Memorial Center in Summit. (Photos by Carol McGowan)

Historical marker to be placed at site of Emmett Till childhood home in Summit

By Carol McGowan

The Summit Community Task Force, Till Family, Emmett Till’s classmates, local/state officials, and visitors will celebrate the 80th birthday of Emmett Till on Sunday, July 25.

They will gather at the site of his childhood home, at 7526 W. 64th St. in Summit at 1 p.m., where they will unveil a marker that will be placed at the site. A grant from the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity was given to the task force to purchase the lot.

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Honorary Emmett Till Avenue in Summit.

The task force is a not-for-profit multipurpose organization that owns the Emmett Till Memorial Center, at 6450 S. 76th Avenue (Emmett Till Avenue) in the village. It was organized in 1992 by Till’s cousin, Pastor Wheeler Parker and his wife, Dr. Marvel Parker. In 2009, the headquarters were dedicated to the memory of Emmett Till.

Till was born in 1941, and lived in Argo-Summit until his family moved to Chicago in the early 1950s. In August 1955, the 14-year-old Till was abducted and brutally murdered while visiting his extended family in Mississippi.

In September 1955, an all-white jury found Roy Bryant and J.W. Milam not guilty of Till’s kidnapping and murder. Protected against double jeopardy, the two men publicly admitted in a 1956 interview with Look magazine that they had killed Till.

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