By Tarrah Callahan
Darryl Hunt, who died March 13, was a long-time employee of the N.C. Coalition for Alternatives to the Death Penalty and a tireless warrior in the fight to end North Carolina’s death penalty. Tarrah Callahan was Darryl’s co-worker and, more importantly, his friend. This post appeared originally on NCCADP’s blog.
On Sunday, I looked around the room at Emmanuel Baptist Church with pain and joy at the more than 150 people who, with just a few hours’ notice, had rushed to Winston-Salem to honor Darryl Hunt. Person after person stood up to share a story or an experience about how Darryl had changed their lives. I struggled to come up with one story that encompassed Darryl, and I just couldn’t. There are too many layers of the complicated person that was Darryl Hunt.
He was the most genuine and authentic person I’ve ever known. His courage and commitment to being “a voice to the voiceless” was unrivaled. Every time I talked to him, he was putting up money from his own personal account to help anyone he could. When we found out that an execution date had been set for Troy Davis in Georgia, Darryl called me and said we had to get buses of students down to march in Atlanta for Troy. When it looked like we weren’t going to be able to raise funds to cover the buses, Darryl just called the company and paid for them himself. When I arrived at Emmanuel Baptist Church the following morning, I saw huge crowds of people waiting to get on the buses. On that Sunday, as on this past one, they showed up at the church with only a few hours’ notice. When it came to setting the agenda for the fight for justice, Darryl spoke and people listened.
To truly know Darryl was to acknowledge his complicated soul. Read more