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Last Updated: Thursday, 3 November 2005, 11:44 GMT
Rosa Parks: Your tributes
Rosa Parks
The body of civil rights icon Rosa Parks, who died last week, has returned to Detroit for burial.

Thousands of mourners have been waiting in line to pay their final respects to Parks, whose funeral is being held on Wednesday.

She died at 92 in Detroit, where she had lived since 1957.

Mrs Parks' refusal to give up her seat to a white man on a bus in Alabama in 1955 triggered a 381-day boycott of buses, organised by the then little-known Baptist minister Martin Luther King Jr.

Mrs Parks' lawyer said she died in her sleep at her home in Detroit, Michigan, with close friends by her side.

What does Rosa Parks' death mean to you? What is her legacy and how will she be remembered?

This debate is now closed. Read a selection of your e-mails below.


Your tributes

I hope that people will never forget her courage and that her spirit will live on in future generations
Vincent, Los Angeles, USA
Rosa Parks was brave and courageous women whose refusal to bow down to racial segregation stuck a major blow, not just for the civil rights of Africa-Americans, but for the rights of all minority groups living in this country. I hope that people will never forget her courage and that her spirit will live on in future generations.
Vincent, Los Angeles, USA

May she rest in eternal peace. It is her image that should grace the dollar note as tribute.
Marcus Frank, Seattle, USA

I can only imagine Rosa looking down and wondering what all the fuss is about. I don't think she ever comprehended her greatness and her fortitude. An excellent role model and one very deserving of the honours now bestowed on her. You done good Rosa.
Anne, Salt Lake City, USA

A great loss to humanity.
Mehran, St. Paul, USA

May you rest in peace, Rosa. You are a hero to us all. You stood up for your beliefs in a time and place, when people could only dream of protest in that environment.
Ken Knickerbocker, Queensbury, NY, USA

What can I say except for what an amazing, awesome, exceptional woman! Rest in peace Mrs Park, like the young'uns will say, 'Ma'am you rule!'
Thierry, Winnipeg, Canada

I along with many others owe you so much for your sacrifice
C Foster, Chicago, United States
RIP Ms Parks. You lived a long and powerful life. I along with many others owe you so much for your sacrifice.
C Foster, Chicago, United States

Rosa Parks deserves to lie in honour. She was a truly great lady. I remember that brave stand she made.
K Driscoll, Kent, England

The world still needs honest people like Rosa to stand up for what is right.
Scooter, Dublin, Ireland

Rosa will always be remembered for a very long time and will never die out and her flame will live with all the Americans she helped.
Fred Argo, Buckie, Scotland

An outstanding lady and human being
Colin Watt, Prestatyn, North Wales
An outstanding lady and human being. Being born after her courageous act it seems unbelievable that people were treated so unbelievably badly because their skin is a different colour. In fact I'll go further and say that it disgusts me. I was brought up to believe we are all equal in the eyes of the Almighty. RIP and respect to a truly remarkable lady.
Colin Watt, Prestatyn, North Wales

May Mrs Parks rest in eternal peace after accomplishing what the good Lord sent her to accomplish here on earth.
Kingsley Chiipanthenga, Blantyre, Malawi

I would like to applaud Rosa, who started the change of discrimination against ethnic, coloured and religious people. God bless you Rosa you are a true Saint. Rest in peace, you did a fine job.
Mike Peart, Swindon, UK

In line of Mother Theresa, Rosa Parks brought down mighty, gun-holding implementers of racist laws with s simple, yet profound act of ignoring the unfair and unjust rules. She has imprinted the unchangeable history forever. May she rest in peace.
Manoi, Charlotte, North Carolina, USA

Rosa Parks, in my heart to a great lady. We will always honour you in spirit!
Michael Owens, Pound, USA

She stood for what she believed was Right. In her day, she was immortalized. Today, people say you're a fanatic to "Stand" for what is Right. Truth and Right are not relative. I know this earth is a better place because of Rosa Parks.
Bobby, Austin, Texas USA

Even to the younger generations who weren't alive when the impact of what she did was at it's fullest, what Rosa Parks did still means a lot to us.
ED & SS, USA

Rosa Parks lit an Olympic torch for equality, human dignity and freedom for all, it is now upon us to keep that torch burning for all generations. She sat down in that bus to stand up for human rights. We need to remember that as a human being you can not give something you don't have. If you don't have freedom, you can not give freedom. If you don't have respect, you will not give respect. Rosa Parks had more than freedom and respect for all in her heart and was not afraid to show it to the world.
Jones Keary Onwonga, Atlanta, Georgia, USA

We all salute her courage and determination, which fuelled the much needed change. She is an icon representative of all the heroes who have dedicated their lives to make this world a better place for all. Half a century on, the battle is still far from being won, but her invaluable contribution to the civil rights struggle will stay in our memory forever. I surely hope that the dream, foreseen by Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks will become reality one day!
Tafadzwa Gidi, Stoke-on-Trent

The entire city mourns her death, and praises her contribution
Jeanne, Montgomery, Alabama, USA
Many in Montgomery Alabama have been busily making plans to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the Montgomery Bus Boycott. The entire city mourns her death, and praises her contribution. Our lives are better because of her.
Jeanne, Montgomery, Alabama, USA

God Bless you Rosa if there were more people like you the world would be a better place.
Glenys Dale, South Yorkshire England

A very brave lady, there is nothing more to say, except that I think we all underestimate how brave that act really was.
John Ashe, Liverpool, England

Thank God we had a person like her. If you are in the right, stand up to what you believe in.
Marshall Umukoro, London, England

Rosa Parks was, is and hopefully always will be an inspiration to us all, especially black people all over the world. She fought for what she believed in not using her fists or weapons but using her mind. May she forever be remembered and may her beliefs be carried on by the people she devoted her life to fighting for.
Natalie, London

an inspiration to all and proof that one person can make a difference. One simple but defiant action, in this case sitting for what you believe in and the lives of future generations are completely changed. A warrior.
Ruth Bush, Manchester, UK

When Mrs. Parks came to Oakland, Ca I brought my mother and son to see her. A little disappointed she was at a small bookstore to be as great as she was instead of the Civic Center or some hall where she could speak about her experience. Our youth will never understand the landmarks Rosa made. I went to the south when I was a small child and did not understand segregation coming from San Francisco I didn't understand how people could get away with treating people like dogs. When the Civil Rights movement came to the bay I participated for justice. If Rosa could sit down I could stand up!
Barbara J Jones, Oakland, USA

We are all still responsible for making the world a more fair and just place
KC, St Paul, USA
A friend and colleague said to me today that Rosa Parks' death marks the end of an era. I feel very blessed to have been born into the era she led, and am mindful that we are all still responsible for making the world a more fair and just place to live.
KC, St Paul, USA

Rosa's contribution to Civil Rights in America and around the world should never be underestimated. She had the courage of her convictions, she stood up for what she believed in and inspired millions - if only there were more people in the world today like Rosa Parks, we would life in a better place.
Richard Hubbert, York, England

Rosa Parks, a small woman with the great courage and self-respect started a long hard battle in a city in the South at a time when segregation was legal. It was a hard struggle that started before I was born, and continued throughout my childhood in the 60s. Rosa, Rev King and all the people who boycotted the buses, by walking miles, riding bikes, car pooling in cabs and other vehicles did so with determination and pride, one only has to see the news reels. It was an amazing thing. She is a Hero in the Civil Rights Movement and will be forever in history and legacy of not just "Black Americans" but "All Americans" and people everywhere who see wrong and try to right it. God Bless You Rosa!
carol, NJ, USA

A true hero does their bit not for fame but as a matter of principle and firm belief on the greater good of humanity. Thank you, Rosa. rest in peace.
Giddy, Canberra

Her courage to stand up for justice was an incredible testimony to her own character. Unfortunately though, I fear that what she did has already been forgotten by too many, and her sacrifice will have been in vain. I hope to God that I am wrong. Rest in peace and thank you.
John Ferguson, Oak Park, IL, USA

I will always remember and admire the quiet strength and humility of Rosa Parks in her personal fight against civil injustice.
Roslina Jupri, Singapore

She was a true icon
Mayo Ogunlabi, London
Mrs Parks, was an extraordinary woman, who did something that today we all take for granted, she stood up for her freedom - by simply refusing to get up. She started so much, and changed a great deal. I would have loved to know what she thought about present day America. Whether she thought that all that had changed was on the surface but the old divides still existed. She was a true icon, who managed to live in to old age. An inspiration to us all. Rest in Perfect Peace Mrs Parks.
Mayo Ogunlabi, London

Rosa Parks was the embodiment of the idea to think different, to believe and act upon a strong sense of faith in what she thought was right. The world is blessed with few individuals with such civil courage to stand up and risk their own lives, for the freedom and rights of the common man.
Lars, Tokyo, Japan

An icon of the civil rights movement and of the 20th century. Gone but not forgotten.
Ryan Hartwell, Birmingham, UK

At first I'd like to offer my sincere condolences to her. I don't know about her a lot though, she must be a real courageous and pioneering person. As a young woman I want to take her as one of my role models in terms of courage and active spirit in my life. God bless her.
Jinok, South Korea

What a wonderful woman! And what a wonderful example of how by being true to yourself, you can be true to your wider community, your country and to your world. May her life continue to inspire others to follow paths to freedom and justice.
Virginia Davis, Portland, Oregon, USA

Her courage and defiance in the face of adversity should give us all inspiration. May her soul rest in peace
Evan, Cardiff, UK

A great woman of our age has passed away but her spirit lives on to inspire many unborn to fight for justice not for the black race alone but for the right of everyone born into this world who may find him/herself in any form of segregation
Jacob K Tampuri, Ghana

Gandhi-ji. King. Guevara. Parks. May her soul rest among the greats.
Karl M, Virginia, USA

Rosa Parks was a very brave woman that day and the politicians were also brave people, to acknowledge that she was right and so both parties began the journey to end racism. If it wasn't for Rosa, I wonder if we would ever have heard of Martin Luther King.
W P Derbyshire, London, UK

What is great about this woman is that she never yearned for greatness, but had it forced on her when she stood up for what she thought was her inalienable right. What the civil rights movement is all about.
Wayne, Ottawa, Canada

A single act by a simple, quiet women changed the shape of an entire nation. I pray that we have more women like her. May her soul rest in peace.
Edwin J Clarke, Jr, Liberia

Rosa parks will always be remembered, because she showed everyone that even in tough situations hold onto your beliefs and stand up for what is right. she helped start the fight in equality for all and may she find joy and love in paradise. God bless her!
Melanie Austin, London

I read her biography when I was a little girl and her story made a huge impression on how I live my life. What an amazing woman, whose strength and courage was the catalyst to the Civil Rights Movement. You are with the angels now Mrs Parks, RIP.
Jenna, Austin, Texas, USA

Very few people show true courage, very few people truly change the path of history. God speed, Rosa Parks.
Ian Hill, Bristol, UK

Rosa Parks refusal to give up her seat was the major catalyst that gave life to the civil rights movement which changed the face of all people of minority groups around the world. May her soul rest in perfect peace.
Joachim Kabiawu, Toronto, Canada

Rosa Parks proved that changing the world can start with one quiet act of personal determination
Jim Walsh, Dublin, Ireland
Rosa Parks proved that changing the world can start with one quiet act of personal determination. The word hero is all to easily used today but she is one truly deserving of the title. May she rest in peace.
Jim Walsh, Dublin, Ireland

Brave hearts are rare. But, Rosa was one in a million oppressed people who had the rare courage to stare danger in the face. You are but dead but continues to live. Bye, brave one.
Ogah Pascal, Abakaliki, Nigeria

When I was at primary school, my head teacher told a story about a woman and a bus. As I got older I realised it was Rosa Parks' story. I have never forgotten it and I doubt that people who hear it ever do.
Sarah, Kent, UK

Rosa, without question, will not have had any idea what the consequences were for her personally when she refused to give up her seat and certainly will not have anticipated her stand being seminal to a world movement. What courage. How lucky we are that people with such courage exist.
Anita, Birmingham, UK

Rosa Parks proved once and for all that one person "can" make a difference. She stood up for what was right and now no one has the excuse that "it doesn't matter what I do" to be complacent or apathetic because of what she did.
John, NJ, USA

Rosa Parks was kind and had a quiet determination and natural understanding of what's fair and decent. God bless her.
John, UK

She will certainly live on in our hearts
Renee Romeo, UK
Rosa Park exhibited courage in the face of oppression and injustice. Courage which so many of us lack today. Though her life here on earth has come to an end, she will certainly live on in our hearts. May we find that same courage to peacefully strive for what is right, so our generation and generations to come will truly be free.
Renee Romeo, UK

Rosa Parks deserves honour for being sincere to speak up for what she believed. We need more sincere men and women like her to say what is speaking deep in their spirits and sure if we do our world will soon be different. Suppression ends in depression but speaking out frees the soul.
Tem Martin, Cameroon

The fact that a person - one determined individual - was able to spark a revolution in society, speaks volumes about Rosa Park's inner strength, idealism, and ultimately, her devotion to the concept of equality and fair treatment for all. I stand up and applaud Mrs Park's efforts, and the busloads (by the millions) who have joined her aboard the "freedom train" because of her inspiring stand. May she rest in peace.
Tony C Yang, Wyoming, USA

If humanity were to wish that some of us stay behind to maintain peace, justice, equity, modesty and all other associated virtues of simplicity and determination, Rosa Parks would certainly have been a candidate. Her spirit too infectious to ignore, was all the 'world' led by young Dr King needed.
Ogunbor Aikhomu, Nigeria

It proves that it is possible for one small person to change the world. You just need to follow your own intuition. You need to cling on to what you believe in. She will always remain an inspiration for generations to come.
Andrez Stenberg, Netherlands

Rosa Parks did her true conviction to outlaw racial discrimination in America that has awaken people about their right to abode whoever they are wherever they may be.
Jean Clemencio-Padayogdog, Malaybalay City, Philippines

She is a hero that stood by her beliefs; equality. She represents freedom. Rest in peace.
Badejo Owolabi, Lagos, Nigeria

Courage and the determination to do the right thing. That is what I understand about Mrs Parks when I read about her. Now that's a hard act to follow, but it must be done to ensure that the legacy continues. God bless you Mrs Parks.
Rozana Jupri, Singapore

I suppose the 50th anniversary of Rosa Parks' "stand" will be remembered this December, what a pity the US has only paid lip-service to the notion of racial equality in the intervening years. There's not much to celebrate when the man behind the subsequent protest, Martin Luther King, was himself assassinated a decade later. There are still plenty of places in the States I'd fear to live in were I black; and the majority of black people in America can look forward to remaining poor and/or socially/politically excluded throughout their lives. Rosa Parks' death is a reminder of the injustice and inequality which prevails in the world lest we grow complacent.
Elizabeth Saxton, UK

The whites should be commended too because they implemented the law and therefore had the "right" to leave it stand. Parks was brave considering how the situation was at that time, she will always be hero, may the lord rest her soul in peace.
Ndawula Harold, Uganda

A remarkable lady who's given hope for the little people out there who may be fighting oppression
Bhurinder Gill, UK
It took tremendous courage for this brave lady to do what she did in those dark days. She's left a legacy for all people who face(d) oppression...even the smallest of protests can, in the end change things, but only the truly brave can do this. Rest in peace Rosa, you truly are a remarkable lady who's given hope for the little people out there who may be fighting oppression.
Bhurinder Gill, UK

Let's not ask what her death means; but her life. It means she has helped humans evolve one step higher on the ladder of destiny. Her life helped all people, not only black Americans, worldwide to stand up for their rights. She will remain a lit candle in a dark world for all to see.
Jean-Pierre Madsen, UK

Rosa Parks, like Gandhi, proved that it doesn't take a revolution to lay bare an unjust law - and that to reveal an injustice for all to see is to make that injustice untenable. An act as simple as refusing to give up a seat can be as forceful as a fist and as evocative as poetry.
Ioanna, Greece

Her life was a profile of rare courage in an age of much desperation. Visiting the Dr. Martin Luther King Center in Atlanta during my student years in the US, I could not help thinking the civil rights movement wouldn't have moved any far without that spark to it that Rosa's act provoked. I pray she becomes an enduring inspiration to the many men, women and children around the world who all, today, have to feel that they are not being treated as any other ordinary humans. Rest in peace Rosa.
Jesse Masai, Kenya

She was a great woman, who made history. Rosa advanced human rights in the USA and was an influence in changing the attitudes of many white people towards civil rights.
Amer Altameemi, Kuwait

It demonstrates that courage does not mean holding a gun.
Francine Palant

It is a wonderful thing when a person stands up for what is right and what is fair. That's what Ms. Rosa Parks did over 50 years ago. She stood up for her rights. I am proud of her and the many other thousands of Americans who fought for justice and equality. This world is a better place because of them. God bless Rosa Parks and her family. May the legacy of freedom and democracy live on and live strong!
Lisa Johnson, USA

A modest lovely gracious lady who inspired a generation to act against injustice. Along with Martin Luther King, she led the way.
Frank Hartry, Amanzimtoti, South Africa




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