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Trayvon Martin Mural Unveiling New York City

Source: Ben Gabbe / Getty

Trayvon Martin’s birthday is a day to celebrate his life, not simply the moment that drove many to action. Saturday marks what would’ve been his 27th birthday.  

Each year his family leads a peace walk commemorating Trayvon’s life. This year’s event included a Peace Walk and Peace Talk at Ives Estates Park.  

Trayvon’s birthday is a moment to reflect on the love and community surrounding his family. It is not about the feckless vigilante playing cop who would take his life three weeks later.

My children were only eight and ten when we learned Trayvon’s name. Watching them grow into adulthood, I wonder if Trayvon would’ve been someone they would have admired.  

In my own moments of parenting despair, I remember the strength and courage of Trayvon’s mother, Sybrina Fulton. Her love and determination, keeping alive the memory of a beloved son, has been inspiring.  

Fulton celebrated her son in an early morning tweet.  

“Happy Heavenly 27th Birthday to my Son/Sunshine. Rest in Power #TrayvonMartin my Prince of Peace, Mommy got you,” tweeted Fulton.

She recently spoke with Good Morning America, saying that there is not a day she does not struggle with the grief of losing her son.  

“It’s a part of my life,” Fulton said. “If you wrote a book about Sabrina Fulton, you can’t leave out Chapter five, where my 17-year-old son was shot and killed.”  

Thanks to pictures shared by his family, we have some glimpses into Trayvon’s life and interests. The African & Black History Twitter account shared a great photo of Trayvon at space camp. His face full of joy and wonder

CNN reported in 2017 that Trayvon was awarded a posthumous bachelor’s degree from Florida Memorial University in aeronautical science. According to the outlet, the HBCU was Fulton’s alma mater.

As a mother and a sister, I remain thankful for Fulton’s work in making sure the world not only doesn’t forget Trayvon’s name but knows him as he did. Fulton said there had been momentum when asked about the organizing and protests over the past few years.  

I absolutely think that change is happening,” Fulton shared. “When I look at the case of George Floyd, and I look at the case of Ahmad Arbery, and the people killed them were convicted and that they are gonna be going to jail for the rest of their lives.

She said it shouldn’t take losing more people for action to happen.

“I feel like we take two steps forward and two steps back,” Fulton said. “Because why did we have to lose those lives in order for us to move the country forward.” 

 

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