Rosa Parks Remembered and Praised for Her ‘Pathways to Freedom’ Program


Rosa Parks, who died Monday (24) at 92 was the U.S. civil rights movement’s most famous heroine. But little known was her humanitarian “Pathways to Freedom” program, which she created with her Rosa Parks Foundation to help disadvantaged children learn about their heritage by taking them to ancestral sites throughout the U.S.

In 1999, long-time Bel Air resident Noel Irwin Hentschel, Founder/CEO of AmericanTours International and Chief White House Travel Advisor to the Secretary of Commerce, honored Parks at a Black Tie dinner at the Beverly Wilshire Hotel with The Noel Foundation’s “Life” Award for her “courage in the civil rights movement” that began in 1955 when she refused to give up her seat to a white passenger on a city bus in Montgomery, Ala., an action that sparked passage a decade later of the Civil Rights Act and the Voting Rights Act. On that awards night, LA Councilman Bernard Parks (then LA Police Chief) escorted Parks on-stage as she sat in her wheelchair to receive the trophy presented by Irwin Hentschel.

Irwin Hentschel, accompanied by Councilman Parks and his wife Bobbie, attended the Rosa Parks Memorial service held Friday, Oct. 28 at the First AME Church in South Los Angeles. Irwin Hentschel will also attend the Rosa Parks “Going Home” Funeral Service Wednesday, Nov. 2, 11 a.m., at the Greater Grace Temple in Detroit, MI, located at 23500 W. Seven Mile, where she may deliver a few remarks praising Parks’ humanitarian work with young people –and will reveal that the Noel Foundation is perpetuating the civil rights pioneer’s memory by continuing an “Education Through Travel” annual project, which takes inner-city kids on journeys to experience and learn more about America. The Noel Foundation will also continue to work with The Rosa Parks Foundation’s “Pathways to Freedom” travel program for young people.

Via Business Wire

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