The Rev. C.T. Vivian has died at the age of 95. Vivian was an early ally of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. who organized pivotal campaigns in the civil rights movement and then spent decades advocating for justice and equality.
Vivian began staging sit-ins in the 1940s, a dozen years before lunch-counter protests made national news.
Barack Obama, who honored Vivian with the Presidential Medal of Freedom, tweeted Friday that “he was always one of the first in the action — a Freedom Rider, a marcher in Selma, beaten, jailed, almost killed, absorbing blows in hopes that fewer of us would have to.”