JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – This year marks 60 years since the assassination of civil rights activist Medgar Evers in his Jackson driveway. In June, there will be a week-long commemoration celebrating the lives and legacy of Medgar and Myrlie Evers.

Evers’ assassination was the first murder of a nationally significant leader in the civil rights movement in the country. His death sparked the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

“Medgar, as a as a soldier on the shores of Normandy, fighting against the Nazis, only to return home and fight racism all over again in the form of Jim Crow, the part African-Americans for restaurants, restrooms and voting, and Myrlie Evers in her life, heading the NAACP and really guiding it to a place where it needed to be. I mean, just their lives were just so courageous and and continue to inspire us,” said Jerry Mitchell, an investigative reporter in Mississippi.

At 90-years-old, Myrlie Evers-Williams continues to promote issues of racial equality and social justice.

“And Myrlie Evers just celebrated her 90th birthday, and I saw her speak out in California to a packed crowd on the floor. And she was telling the students, never give up, never give up. And as she’s shown in her life, it’s never too late to do the right thing. And that’s what we see in the story of Black workers, the efforts that it’s never too late to do the right thing,” stated Mitchell.

Freedom Rider Hezekiah Watkins met Medgar Evers as a teenager, but he wasn’t a fan at first because Evers was talking non-violence, which was something he and his friends didn’t want to hear.

“My thing and others was, I’m not going to let you hit me upside my head, and I don’t retaliate. That was our mindset back then, and this was before things really, really got out of hand in terms of the beatings and the murders that took place. I just was not a believer of non-violence,” said Watkins.

However, Watkins said Medgar Evers saved his life when he attended a meeting, and Evers asked the young men about their guns.

“His last question is, ‘Once you run out of ammunition, what are you gonna do?’ We kind of looked around at each other, and then he went on to say, ‘Have you ever seen a dog?’ I’ll never forget this, ‘Have you ever seen a dog chasing a car? That dog bark be so ferocious that he’s going to eat the car up. But once that car stop, that dog relax, and that dog ask himself, what do I do now? That’s what you would be asking yourself when you run out of those little few bullets that you have. What do I do now?’ It puts something on my mind. It really did, and I’m sad. He has a point. You know, once you don’t have any ammunition, what are you going to do?”

Watkins said that’s when he and his friends become non-violent.