After mentioning her in her poignant Golden Globes speech, Oprah Winfrey is continuing to honor the legacy of Recy Taylor. The star, who received the Cecil B. deMille Award on Jan. 7, brought up Taylor’s story during her acceptance speech.
“There's someone else, Recy Taylor, a name I know and I think you should know too. In 1944, Recy Taylor was a young wife and mother walking home from a church service she'd attended in Abbeville, Alabama, when she was abducted by six armed white men, raped, and left blindfolded by the side of the road coming home from church. They threatened to kill her if she ever told anyone, but her story was reported to the NAACP where a young worker by the name of Rosa Parks became the lead investigator on her case and together they sought justice,” Winfrey said.
“But justice wasn't an option in the era of Jim Crow. The men who tried to destroy her were never persecuted. Recy Taylor died 10 days ago, just shy of her 98th birthday. She lived as we all have lived, too many years in a culture broken by brutally powerful men. For too long, women have not been heard or believed if they dare speak the truth to the power of those men. But their time is up,” she continued.
“I just hope that Recy Taylor died knowing that her truth, like the truth of so many other women who were tormented in those years, and even now tormented, goes marching on. It was somewhere in Rosa Parks's heart almost 11 years later, when she made the decision to stay seated on that bus in Montgomery, and it's here with every woman who chooses to say, 'Me too.' And every man—every man who chooses to listen.”
On Tuesday, Winfrey continued to honor Taylor’s legacy by posting a photo of herself standing at her grave. “I don’t believe in coincidences, but if I did this would be a powerful one,” she wrote. “On assignment for [60 Minutes] I end up in the town of Abbeville where [Recy Taylor] suffered injustice , endured and recently died. (GGspeech) To be able to visit her grave so soon after ‘speaking her name ‘sharing her story, a woman I never knew.”