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Legacies Project Oral History: Opal Simmons

Thu, 01/16/2020 - 9:14am

Opal Simmons was born in 1931 in Detroit. After graduating from Eastern High School, she attended Fisk University and Wayne State University. She lived in New York for a few years as a young woman and recalls attending dances at the Savoy. She volunteered as a letter reader for the American Red Cross during World War II. During her working years in Detroit, she was secretary to the deputy mayor in the Coleman A. Young administration. Richard Simmons Jr. became her second husband. Later in life, she attended seminary and became a minister.

Opal Simmons was interviewed by students from Skyline High School in Ann Arbor in 2010 as part of the Legacies Project.

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Legacies Project Oral History: Lomas Shaw

Thu, 01/16/2020 - 9:08am

Lomas Shaw was born in 1915 in Laurens County, South Carolina. He attended Sterling High School in Greenville, SC, where he played football and baseball. He sang in a quartet at Friendship College in Rock Hill, South Carolina. After moving to Detroit in 1943, Shaw was a streetcar and bus driver for many years. He was married to his wife for over 70 years, and they had seven children. He was a dedicated member of Tabernacle Missionary Baptist Church. He passed away on Saturday, February 18, 2017.

Lomas Shaw was interviewed by students from Skyline High School in Ann Arbor in 2010 as part of the Legacies Project.