These days, Cephus “Uncle Bobby” Johnson is a regular at nearly every community event in Oakland, Ca. Johnson is the uncle of Oscar Grant, III, who was murdered by former transportation officer Johannes Mehserle on January 1st, 2009. Uncle Bobby was one of the last people to speak with Oscar Grant before the fatal incident on the platform of a Bay Area transit station on New Years morning 2009.
“Uncle Bobby”, as Oscar called him, has since dedicated his time to working with the community through his foundation, The Oscar Grant Foundation. “The group was founded in effort to promote the arts as a way to keep youth in the community involved,” said Johnson.
Since the group’s inception in January 2011, the Oscar Grant Foundation has held many events, including a community town hall about police oversight, a youth talent showcase, and events that foster literacy and education in underserved communities. Most importantly, some of the people who attend these events are wearing police badges. The Oscar Grant foundation is working to build the bond between law enforcement and the community.
Johnson realizes that Grant’s death could be an open, shut, and forgotten case, or it could serve as a platform for change. In turn, Uncle Bobby is standing up to be counted. He is in the community, at every event, standing out. Not because of his freshly shaven head or his big genuine smile.
He stands out because he is in the community- changing it- one event at a time.
To learn more, visit: http://www.oscargrantfoundation.com/