Chicago man vows to restore legacy of ancestors 100 years after Tulsa Race Massacre in Oklahoma

CHCIAGO (WLS) -- It's been 100 years since Dekalb Walcott's grandfather was separated from his family

Walcott is on a special pilgrimage as part of an ancestral homage to set the record straight.

A century ago, Walcott's grandfather, David McIntosh, lived among the Muscogee (Creek) Nation near Tulsa, Oklahoma where Walcott is today.

"It's a very moving experience because, you know, this is where my family on my father's side was from," Walcott said as he pointed out old photos of his grandfather.

RELATED: Tulsa pastors honor 'holy ground' 100 years after massacre

This weekend, the retired Chicago fire chief and author reunited with relatives in Oklahoma to commemorate the tragic events of the Tulsa Race Massacre

"Their whole goal was to run Blacks out of the state of Oklahoma," he said.

Walcott said, in addition to paying their respects, his family is rallying to restore the legacy and losses of their ancestors.

"I'm speaking for my grandfather, his relatives, and those folks that were here and no longer can speak for themselves," Walcott said.

RELATED: Tulsa Race Massacre: Story behind Black Wall Street, racist mob that burned it to the ground

On May 31, 1921, angry white mobs violently took to the city's Greenwood District, which was a prosperous area known as Black Wall Street.

The mobs leveled dozens of blocks worth of businesses and homes, killing hundreds of Black Americans and displacing about 10,000 others.

"To turn these people out like this, to turn on them the way they did, to, you know, kill, maim..." Dekalb described.

Today, Walcott and his family, like so many other Black families in Oklahoma, have gathered in Tulsa to continue their calls for justice, reparations and for city, state and federal officials to apologize.

RELATED: 'I still smell smoke': Tulsa Race Massacre survivor, 107, calls on US to acknowledge 1921 atrocity
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1994 home video shows Ernestine Gibbs, a survivor of the Tulsa Race Massacre, remember the day a white mob stormed the city's Greenwood District, known as Black Wall Street.



After 100 years, Walcott said they've been waiting long enough.

"This has been a vicious battle, not just for myself and my family; people from Oklahoma, in general, and Tulsa," Walcott said. "I don't plan to stop. Whatever I need to do to contribute to correcting these wrongs, I'm in it."
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