Double Victory

Civil Rights, Cultural Participants

Photograph by John Storey, Copyright Getty / The LIFE Images Collection

Three key figures in the political and social movements of the 1950s, 60s, and 70s had important connections to the U.S. military. Medgar Evers, Alex Haley, and Dovey Johnson Roundtree. Best known for his strong stances during the Civil Rights Movement, Evers was a World War II veteran who was assassinated in his own driveway in 1963.

Haley, best known for, The Autobiography of Malcolm X (1965) and Roots: the Saga of an American Family (1976), was a 20-year veteran of the Coast Guard where he honed his skills as a journalist. Roundtree was one of the first African Americans to join the Women's Army Auxiliary Corps in 1942. She earned her law degree from Howard University after the war by using her G.I. Bill benefits and went on to successfully argue the 1955 landmark Interstate Commerce Commission case that ended racial segregation in interstate bus travel.


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