Oral Interviews

Kaylyn Pryor was a twenty year old aspiring model. In 2015, Kaylyn lost her life to gun violence after visiting her grandmother on the southside of Chicago.

In this oral history interview clip, Kaylyn’s cousin, Ravyn, discusses how Kaylyn’s family keeps her memory alive.

Prior to becoming a Baptist minister, Rev. Mattie Johnson Waters owned a juke joint. But in 1958, Waters converted to Christianity and spent decades of her life serving the Black community in Altoona, PA before she passed away from COVID-19 in 2022. In this clip, Robert Marshall, Waters’ grandson, reflects on her community outreach.

In late 2021, Irene Chavez, an Afro-Latinx woman, allegedly died by suicide while in the custody of the Chicago Police Department.

In this oral history interview, Irene’s friend, Jessica Disu, talks about how Irene’s community of loved ones initially memorialized her with a press conference to demand answers and transparency from the police regarding the circumstances of her passing.

She also discussed Irene’s love for the Green Bay Packers, her queer identity, her military service, and her desire to address food deserts in Black and Brown communities.

Warren Smith, a retired pastor in the African Methodist Episcopal Zion (AME Zion) church, was tasked with eulogizing Keith Tucker, a 40 year old Black man gunned down in Evanston, IL in 2010. In this oral history interview clip, Smith defines a eulogy and discusses how he placed emphasis on the value of Keith’s life during the memorial service.