Monday, July 25, 2011

John T Williams

John T Williams was a homeless man in Seattle Washington shot and killed by a Seattle police officer who confused Williams as a threat. Williams was a very talented wood carver, starting at young age taught by his father and his father, a tradition that was handed down from generations. At 15 years of age, John T Williams did and accomplished his first wood carving, which made his family very proud, his native background was a belief that did him great justice. Williams had family who loved and cared for him, but he also had a bad addiction to alcohol and that forced him to wonder away from his loved ones, which put him in the predicament he was in when he was shot. John Williams was a harmless drunk and never gave anyone any trouble, he always did as he was told by the Seattle police force, there were even officers that spoke kindly of him when the time arose in the time of his death ,the officer who shot and killed Mr. Williams was unfortunately not well known with him and made a very huge mistake when the circumstances arose. I don't think the city of Seattle understands the negativity of the situation, and how the native American society was affected by this misfortune, It brought a lot of outrage and racism into the community, something that was hard enough to live with before all this happened. I believe that is the only reason the city of Seattle allowed this totem memorial for Mr. Williams, they knew they did wrong and this is their way of saying there sorry. I will always remember Williams even though I never knew him personally, but I believe everybody has good in them no matter what the circumstances are….. . I loved the site of the memorial,, right on the waterfront of pier 57, the water gives it a “Piece of mind” setting, a relaxing calm, a place where you can reflect on what has happened and what could still happen.  People came and went as I stood there and watched, people of so many races, It didn’t matter who you where or where you came from, what mattered was that Williams finally got the respect he deserved, to be able to rest in peace and know that he was the cause of something good in this world. The wood carvers that spoke to us were very nice and told us the meaning of each part of the totem, or should I say the stories, that they believed were the truth. The colors of the totem showed me life, strength, wisdom, courage and hope for our people, and that one day we will all be able to live together as one unity, to work, communicate and live together in harmony, but we all know that will never be the case in the times we live in now but it doesn’t hurt to have a dream. Our people tried this once many years ago and the outcome was tragic and we are still suffering today for our kindness then. May we all have peace and serenity in our lives, as will our children, don’t let the death of our brother be in vain. REST IN PEACE JOHN T WILLIAMS, we are all looking up at you.

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