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Profile of Rosa Parks
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Rosa and her husband never had children. But she is survived by
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Hi, I'm Christian with About.com, and today we're looking at the admirable life of Rosa Parks.Rosa Louise McCauley was born February 4, 1913 in Tuskegee, Alabama. She was educated at a rural school, then a private institution before moving on to Alabama State Teacher's College High School. She didn't graduate with her class though. Rosa helped care for her mother and grandfather, both of whom fell ill.  
Rosa married Raymond Parks in December of 1932, and achieved her high school diploma in 1934.
Raymond was an activist, assisting in efforts to free the Scottsboro Boys in the 1930s. The couple worked with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, for which Rosa served as secretary and youth leader at their local branch.And that activist spirit would lead to her famous arrest. Rosa was arrested on a Montgomery, Alabama bus on Dec. 1, 1955 after refusing to give up her seat to a white male passenger. She was 42-years-old at the time, headed home from the department store like any other day. On those city buses, the first 10 rows were reserved for white passengers. Rosa was in the 11th row, but when the bus became crowded, the driver demanded she move. When she wouldn't, he called the police. Rosa was arrested and briefly jailed.
Her story launched a movement. Black people and sympathizers organized, promoting a boycott of the city bus line that lasted 381 days. A young Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. emerged as a leader in the movement, appointed spokesperson for the boycott. He preached non-violence to the thousands of participants.Rosa was convicted under city law, though her lawyer filed an appeal. Not long after, the U.S. District Court in the region ruled segregated public buses unconstitutional in a separate case, a decision the U.S. Supreme Court upheld.Rosa became known as the Mother of the Civil Rights Movement, and accrued numerous accolades throughout the rest of her life. After moving to Michigan, she became a deaconess in the African Methodist Episcopal Church. She also worked for a Congressman and co-founded the Rosa and Raymond Parks Institute for Self Development. Rosa received more than 40 honorary doctorate degrees and hundreds of other awards. To name a few, she was voted by TIME Magazine as one of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. President Bill Clinton awarded her the Medal of Freedom, the highest award given to any civilian citizen in the United States. Comparable to it only is the Congressional Medal of Honor, which Rosa also received.
Rosa wrote four books, made television appearances and much more. She died of natural causes at age 92 on October 24th, 2005, just shy of the 50th anniversary of her arrest. Her body was brought to Washington D.C., where thousands mourned her death and celebrated her life. Rosa and her husband never had children, but she is survived by her great work and her legacy.
Thanks for watching our profile of Rosa Parks, for more information go to About.com.
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