All of us have secrets–things in our past we’d rather not discuss. NPR’s Michele Norris discovered a secret about her father, years after his death. Belvin Norris Junior was a native of Ensley. He served in the Navy during World War II. An African American man, he was shot by white police officers in downtown Birmingham in 1946. The injury was minor, but Belvin never discussed the incident with anyone. Michele Norris’ search for the truth about what happened to her father is the subject of her new book, The Grace of Silence. Norris tells WBHM’s Bradley George that her father’s secret was never meant to be the focus of her book.
In an extended interview, Michele Norris talks about spending summers in Birmingham as a child.