Men Run From Atlanta To Ferguson, Overcome With Emotion At Brown Memorial

Londrelle Hall and Ray Mills set off on a 550 mile journey from Atlanta, Georgia to Ferguson, Missouri on November 3, running an average of 35 miles a day for almost three weeks as they ran what they named the Run for Justice, in honor of Michael Brown, the unarmed teenager who was gunned down in August.   Hall and Mills report that they not only wanted to bring attention to Brown’s death, but also to racial injustice all over the country.  Hall states, ““The Mike Brown incident happened and I had a reason to run for not just my problems, but the problems of the world. I came to Ray with the idea of running to Ferguson to raise awareness of what’s going on here, and he was behind it 100 percent. In our society we get complacent and things come and go, like Trayvon…and Mike Brown, so I wanted to do something that was meaningful and kept an eye on Ferguson.”

run for justice tshirt

They arrived at Brown’s memorial on Canfield Drive on a rainy Saturday afternoon, with both of them overwhelmed with emotion at the sight of flowers, candles, and teddy bears at the site.  Hall dropped to the ground and began to cry; regarding the emotion of the moment, he states, “My experience was putting myself in his shoes the entire way,” he explained. “From [Shnucks, a local grocery store], we had the locals walk us [to the memorial] and tell us the story. When I got here I broke down and cried because I was in his shoes and felt the same pain that he would feel, and that the community felt. I know there’s a lot of tension, and I can just feel the energy here and my soul cried out.”

Mills reports the feeling at Brown’s memorial as being “surreal,” stating, “You watch it on TV from home, and we collaborated on this idea. While we’re doing it, there’s no way to expect how you would feel until you’re actually here. When I arrived, it was breathtaking. This young man was killed here coming from a store. He’s one of the main reasons we are here.”

The pair started a GoFundMe campaign before they set out on their journey, and will donate the money to Brown’s family.  The pairs long term goal is to evolve Run for Justice into a community based education program that offers afterschool and summer workshops with courses in African American History, Arts, Critical Thinking and You Empowerment.  Regarding their achievements and their goals, Hall states, ““I think it’s been pretty successful.  People are paying attention to us and paying attention to Ferguson. It doesn’t stop here. This is only the beginning; this is just the first run. This is the first leg of continuing to raise awareness of police brutality and racial injustice.”