On May 30, 1943, civil rights activist James Chaney was born in Meridian, Mississippi. Tragically, his life was cut short in June 1964, at the age of 21, when he and two other activists were murdered by Ku Klux Klansmen near the town of Philadelphia, Mississippi.
Their bodies were discovered in a ditch after 44 days. A federal investigation followed, and in 1967, seven of the 10 suspects were convicted under conspiracy charges.
However, in the years that followed, activists continued to call on authorities to investigate further, citing new evidence and interviews to implicate Edgar Ray Killen, a man acquitted in the first trial.
On June 20, 2005, Killen was found guilty of three counts of manslaughter and sentenced to 60 years in prison. He died in 2018.