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"Greater Love Has No One..."

02/01/2005 - Some things are worth dying for...many things are worth living for. James Reeb knew these truths.

It would take an entire book to describe all that the Reverend James Reeb lived for, and such a book has been penned – No Greater Love...The James Reeb Story, by Duncan Howlett.

February is Black History Month and one of Casper's own, Jim Reeb, played a self-sacrificing, heroic role. Responding to a nationwide plea from Dr. Martin Luther King for clergy men of all faiths to come to Selma, Alabama to protest the violence that took place on March 7, 1965 ("Bloody Sunday") at Edmund Pettus Bridge, Rev. Reeb left his work helping the needy in Boston and traveled south. On the evening of March 9, after dining with to fellow clergymen in a local restaurant, Jim Reeb and his companions were attacked and beaten by four white men shouting racial slurs as they approached. One of the men swung a heavy club into the side of Rev. Reebs head, resulting in a massive skull fracture and a large blood clot. He died two days later, leaving behind a wife and four small children.

Four days after Reverend James Reeb died President Johnson delivered a voting rights bill to congress stating that the tragic struggle in Selma "is part of a larger movement...Their cause must be our cause, too...it's all of us who must overcome the crippling legacy of bigotry and injustice. And we shall overcome."

No Greater Love...an apt title for a book describing the Reverend James Reeb, what he considered worth living for, and what he considered worth dying for. AND HIS DEATH WAS NO IN VAIN. One need only look at America's children today, playing side by side, to recognize this truth.

("Greater Love Has No One..." is a new Our Town Casper feature. If you know a story of sacrificial giving, please contact us at 307-234-3597 or email ourtowncasper@bresnan.net)

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