Just as the night’s speeches were beginning Thursday evening, one of the speakers brought DNC delegates to tears with a memory of reconciliation.
Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., the civil rights activist, told the story of what happened almost 50 years after he was beaten by an angry mob in Rock Hill, S.C.:
“A few years ago, a man from Rock Hill, inspired by President Obama’s election, decided to come forward,” Lewis said. “He came to my office in Washington and said, ‘I am one of the people who beat you. I want to apologize. Will you forgive me?’ I said, ‘I accept your apology.’ He started crying. He gave me a hug. I hugged him back, and we both started crying. This man and I don’t want to go back; we want to move forward.”
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Lewis and that man, Elwin Wilson, appeared on “Good Morning America” in September 2009.
“I never thought this would happen,” Lewis said on “GMA.” “It says something about the power of love, the power of grace and the power of people to be able to say, ‘I’m sorry.’”