It is vital for our youth to know about the importance of our past. Black history should not be taught to our children just in the month of February nor should they be taught only about specific people that ended up becoming famous. There are many people whose story goes untold or un-noticed for many reasons.
If you are a parent or a teacher, or have the ability to reach someone period, it is our responsibility to let their stories be heard. With that being said, let class begin.
Before there was Serena Williams there was Althea Gibson.
Althea Gibson was a professional tennis player and golfer born in 1927. In 1956, she became the first person of color to win a Grand Slam title (the French Open). The following year she won both Wimbeldon and the U.S. Nationals, then won both again in 1958, and was voted Female Athlete of the Year by the Associated Press in both years. In all, she won 11 Grand Slam tournaments, including six doubles titles, and was inducted into the International Sports Hall of Fame and the International Women Sports Hall of Fame.
Here is a short documentary about her success, her tribulations, and how she became “somebody”, narrated by the late Maya Angelou. You even get to see the great Althea speak herself.
Serena Williams paid homage to Althea Gibson saying it was an honor to follow in her footsteps. The two are very similar with their determination and love for the game.
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