In a devastating blow in Oklahoma, a judge dismissed the reparations lawsuit filed by the last three known survivors of the 1921 Tulsa Race Massacre. Lessie Benningfield Randle, 108, Viola Fletcher, 109, and her brother Hughes Van Ellis, 102, fought tirelessly against the city of Tulsa and other parties for the injustices inflicted upon them when their Greenwood neighborhood was burned to the ground.
Historians estimate as many as 300 people perished in the massacre, leaving thousands homeless.
The three survivors sought relief from the ongoing harm caused by this tragic event, as well as restitution for the gains others have obtained through the exploitation of their suffering.
The city succeeded in having the lawsuit dismissed, arguing that mere historical association does not grant unlimited rights to seek compensation. The court ruled that the plaintiff’s petitions should be permanently dismissed, leaving them without recourse.