“I am going to encourage everyone out there to honor my daughter by bringing a book by We Act Radio, a book that you love — not just something that you want to throw away — but something that impassioned you. She was impassioned by what she read and lived her life accordingly,” says Rev. Kenneth McClenton, father of the late Charnice Milton.
Video continues with a brief visit to the not-yet-renovated store space and a few remarks from bookstore organizer and We Act Radio co-owner, Kymone Freeman.
Neighborhoods East of the River in Washington, DC, have not had a bookstore for many years. Pyramid Books, formerly on Good Hope Road, was the last in Ward 8. Ward 7’s last bookstore, on Sheriff Road, which sold Christian religious texts and related items, is also long gone. There are small shops, offering specialized books, inside the Frederick Douglass Home, America’s Islamic Heritage Museum, and a few other nearby spots. In addition, Mahogany Books, which opened in late 2017 — just around the corner — offers African American literature. But the Charnice Milton Community Bookstore will serve a serious need in the area.
“Every neighborhood deserves a bookstore,” says activist and co-owner of WeAct Radio Kymone Freeman. He also stresses the link between literacy and reduction in crime, especially the sort that took the life of journalist Charnice Milton in May 2015.
Kenneth McClenton, Open Heart Close Case, Inc. Chairman and father of Charnice Milton, says:
“This is a tremendous recognition of a great young woman’s life whose commitment to God and community rises above even the most hostile acts of mankind. This is a sincerely special way to offer her name as a testament to the power of reading and the hope of reviving a community.”