Waiting for it.

Living in Carbondale, there was no getting around meeting up with Lillian Adams, who just died at age 96. She was a fixture, an icon, and a protector of the weak in the region for six decades. Lillian was an activist in various causes for human rights and social restructuring starting way back in the 1930s. She never let up. She was always a protector of the powerless everywhere, any way that she could.

Like many, Lillian seemed to have stretched her life to witness certain milestones. Several studies have documented the fragmented nature of the timing of death around holidays, birthdays, and other special events. She really wanted to see Barak Obama inaugurated as President of the United States. And, she did.


From the So. Ill:

“Lillian Adams’ voice has been stilled.

Adams, 96, died Saturday at her Carbondale home after a remarkable life as an activist for social justice, peace, civil liberties and women’s rights, to name just a few of the causes she embraced.

Though in failing health, Adams insisted on watching TV coverage of President Barack Obama’s inauguration last Tuesday. Family said she repeatedly whispered, “Astonishing, astonishing” at seeing Obama, the man she had supported since his first campaign for the U.S. Senate, sworn in as president.

A search of The Southern’s archives reveals letters from Lillian Adams on dozens of issues. Her first Letter to the Editor, written shortly after World War II ended, upheld the right of a communist speaker to speak on the steps of the Murphysboro courthouse.


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