I was watching an episode of the popular television show, America’s Got Talent. The show featured Archie Williams. He spent 37 years in jail for a crime he didn’t commit–RAPE! The DNA of a serial rapist freed him three years ago.
The question from host/executive producer Simon Cowell was, “How did you survive?” He answered the question saying, “My body was in prison but not my mind.” In other words FREEDOM is of the mind.
The song he sang, “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down On Me.” What happen to Archie Williams in 1982, can still happen to any black man in America in 2022. This brings me back to Maury Wills, he did not “Let the Sun Fall Down on Him.”
Maury, followed the lead of lead of the World’s first black Heavyweight Champion, Jack Johnson, the great athlete, scholar and actor, Paul Roberson, the incomparable baseball pioneer and civil rights leader, Jackie Robinson, last but not least, The Greatest, Muhammad Ali.
They all understood the most important game being played in America is not football, baseball or basketball–it is “The Game Called Life.” It is the only game being played where being called a Super-Star truly means something.
Maury, decided he was going to be a FREE man in his lifetime. Archie Williams said it best, “The system locked up my body and not my mind.” As black men we can not let the system lock up our minds.
He left a trail in in his dc housing project, for little guys who followed him, , like his brother Donald and me. There were athletes who followed us from the projects with names like Cecil Turner, Jimmy Bland, Kenneth Springfield, Alfonso Lawson, Gus Lee, Roger Scott and Darryl Hill (Mayfair/Parkside).
They left an impact in their communities. They became NFL players, teachers, principals, a psychiatrist, a sports talk show host and the first black to play at the Naval Academy and in the ACC (Atlantic Coast Conference).
Maury Wills Field