Charlottesville Archives - StoryCorps

“Charlottesville Shouldn’t Be Discussed”: But This Local Refused to Forget

On August 12, 2017, hundreds of white nationalists converged on Charlottesville, Virginia to protest the removal of a Confederate monument. The “Unite the Right” rally became deadly when a car rammed into a crowd of counter-protesters, killing Heather Heyer and injuring more than a dozen others.

Charlottesville resident, 52-year-old Lisa Woolfork was in that crowd, and she was at the intersection where the car attack took place. The shock from that violent day remains with her. But as she told Kendall King-Sellars, who was also in the crowd that day, not everyone wants to talk about it.

Counter-protest to the “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville, Virginia on August 12, 2017. Courtesy of Lisa Woolfork.

Today, Lisa is an associate professor at the University of Virginia, and she now runs her own sewing group, “Black Women Stitch,” and podcast, “Stitch Please.”

Lisa and Kendall’s conversation is brought to you by One Small Step at the University of Virginia’s Karsh Institute of Democracy, with support from the Memory Project at UVA and WTJU.

Top Photo: Lisa Woolfork (Left) and Kendall King-Sellars (Right). Courtesy of Lisa Woolfork and Kendall King-Sellars.

This broadcast is supported in part by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, a private corporation funded by the American people, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Originally aired August 12, 2022, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

Charlottesville Victim Heather Heyer Remembered by Her Mother

On August 11 and 12, 2017, white nationalists from around the country gathered in Charlottesville, Virginia for a rally they called Unite the Right. They were met by counter-demonstrators who showed up to protest against the rally.

Heather Heyer, 32, was one of these counter-demonstrators. She was killed at the rally by a white nationalist when he drove his car into the crowd, also injuring 19 others.

Heather grew up in a small town in the area but was working in Charlottesville at a law firm when she was killed.

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At StoryCorps, her supervisor and friend, Alfred Wilson, sat down with her mother, Susan Bro, to remember the first time he met Heather, while she was interviewing for a job.

Top photo: Alfred Wilson, Heather’s supervisor from the law office where she worked, with Susan Bro, Heather’s mother, at their StoryCorps interview in Charlottesville, Virginia in July 2018. By Grace Pauley for StoryCorps.
Bottom photo: Heather Heyer in April of 2014. Courtesy of the Heather Heyer Foundation.

Originally aired August 10, 2018, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

John Hunter, Julianne Swope and Irene Newman

When John Hunter started teaching more than 30 years ago, he wanted to get his students to think about major world issues.

So he invented the World Peace Game. Students are divided into countries, then Hunter gives them a series of global crises — natural disasters, political conflicts — that they solve by collaborating with each other.

Hunter’s classes are remarkably successful at resolving the crises peacefully, a fact made all the more remarkable because his students are in 4th grade.

Hunter recently sat down for StoryCorps with a two former World Peace Game players: 11-year-old Julianne Swope (top photo) and 20-year-old Irene Newman (bottom photo).

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Originally aired December 25, 2011 on NPR’s Weekend Edition Sunday.

Gregg Korbon and his wife Kathryn

Gregg Korbon and his wife, Kathryn, talk about their son, Brian, who when he was almost 9 years old told his parents he wouldn’t make it to “double digits.” One day while playing in a little league game, he collapsed and died. Today the field where he played his last game is named Brian C. Korbon Field.

Originally aired November 20, 2009, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

Carol and Robert Harllee

Robert Harllee talks with his daughter Carol about his experiences as a military chaplain during the Vietnam War. They discuss the challenges of being with soldiers after they have been seriously wounded and are unsure whether they are going to live or die.

Originally aired May 26, 2006, on NPR’s Morning Edition.

David and John Heins

After becoming a farther himself, David Heins interviews his own father, John, about the experience of becoming a parent, and shares how this has led him to a new appreciation for his own parents.

Originally aired on June 17, 2005, on NPR’s Morning Edition.