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More than just a martyr, Tyre Nichols was a beloved father, son and Memphis skateboarder. On Friday, legendary skateboarder Tony Hawk announced he plans to honor Nichols by donating to his memorial fund, which includes building a skate park in honor of the late 29-year-old’s legacy.
As part of his traveling tour, Tony Hawk is offering fans signed photos of he and Rick Thorne doing doubles. Proceeds from the sales will go toward Tyre Nichols’ memorial fund, Hawk wrote on Twitter.
Tony Hawk supports Tyre Nichols memorial fund
Like many victims of police violence, Nichols was minding his own business when a swarm of Memphis Police Department officers descended on him during a traffic stop on the evening of Jan. 7.
Just a few minutes from home, Nichols was attacked, beaten and pepper sprayed while officers refused to inform him of any alleged crime.
Fearing for his life, he ran, only to be captured soon after. Released body cam footage shows five Black officers taking turns kicking, punching and beating him, despite having control of his arms.
As a bloodied Tyre Nichols lay slumped, falling in and out of consciousness, more officers and EMT first responders arrived, only to stare at him and make jokes about his beating for nearly thirty minutes.
In total, seven officers have been relieved of duty, and six have been officially fired. Yet only the five Black officers have so far been charged with murder.
As renewed calls for police reform and police abolition reach the president’s ear, it remains to be seen whether a divided Congress will take any substantial action to end the unconstitutional police killings of unarmed Black people in the “land of the free.”
In the meantime, private individuals like Tony Hawk are doing what they can to support Tyre Nichols.