The beauty in pain stretched across Lake Washington on a cloudy Saturday afternoon.
Rivian Smith, 80, and her 16-year-old granddaughter Laila were among hundreds who participated in the “Bridge to the Future” march in honor of the Black Lives Matter movement. The event designed for children to participate was intended to prompt conversation and change so there isn’t a need for protests and displays of solidarity in the future because there’s true equality among people and an end to police brutality.
It’s a goal Smith, a Black woman, fought for in the late 1970s and ’80s as a parent of children at Mercer Island High. A goal she’s still willing to march for, grabbing her face mask and gloves to protect against the coronavirus plus her cane to walk the 4 miles across Lake Washington along a pathway on the I-90 bridge.
“When you look at all of the insurrections — the fall of Rome, the fall of apartheid, the French Revolution — it was led by young people,” said Smith, who was also accompanied by her white daughter-in-law Julie, 52. “While I couldn’t change the world for my children, my grandchildren are doing that.
“They have seen the pain that I’ve talked about and witnessed the killings of people their age that I used to talk about. And that’s the painful thing; they had to see that before change could come.”
Natalie Wright, 33, and Tiffany Chancellor, 34, spent the past five days planning Saturday’s event, which was a first for the friends. Both are also wives of Seahawks players — lineback