NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ – The mother of Eric Garner, a black man who uttered the words “I can’t breathe” before dying after being held in a choke hold by a white police officer, will help lead a protest walk in the city next month.
Gwen Carr, the grieving mother and train operator-turned-activist, will join in a march against racism and police brutality that is scheduled for Aug. 2.
Carr’s participation in the march was announced today on Facebook by New Brunswick native Tormel Pittman, who organized and led a protest march through the city streets five days after George Floyd died after a Minneapolis police officer kneeled on his neck for almost nine minutes on May 25.
Many of the 300 or so protestors at that rally wore T-shirts emblazoned with the words, “I can’t breathe again.”
Many have pointed to the similarities between the Garner and Floyd incidents, including the fact that both were both capture on film.
Following her son’s death, Carr became an author and a public speaker. She also became part of the Black Lives Matter movement and has worked closely with Rev. Al Sharpton. According to several news reports, Carr reached out to Floyd’s family after his death.
“Let’s give our beloved sister a warm NJ welcome and let her know that her son, Eric Garner, did not die in vain,” Pittman posted on Tuesday.
The protest walk will start on the corner of Throop Avenue and Handy Street and will proceed to City Hall.
In addition to the New Brunswick one, Pittman has led rallies in Phillipsburg, Plainfield and other towns since Floyd's death.