10 months ago



THE BACK STORY OF OUR STORY A significant part of Black history remains buried and it is only through a deliberate and continuous journey that its intrinsic value can be brought to the forefront. As Black people, it is our responsibility to discover and share our untold stories. It is through literal, metaphorical, historical and personal stepping stones that we begin to tread a path for others. LITERALLY SPEAKING Tigers are hunters by nature and tend to live isolated lives. They often stay in certain geographic areas in the wild. 2 Although they are very strong, they are endangered animals and several species are extinct. 3 Even though they are dwindling in number, they continue to be the largest and strongest members of the cat family. Photo Credit: Oleg Kozlov The discovery of fire, especially portable fire through torches, 4 transformed civilization. Because of the ability to heat, purge, reshape and provide power, fire remains a practical and symbolic part of our lives. A prime example of this is the torch used in the Olympic Games. It has become internationally known as the official kickoff of the events. Its continued use today exemplifies the appreciation of ancient cultures and time-honored traditions. 5 Photo Credit: Zora Both Tigers & Fires ROAR! THE TIGER & THE TORCH Page | 8

THE TIGER SYMBOLIZES STRENGTH, SURVIVAL, AND TENACITY. THE TORCH SYMBOLIZES VISION, LEGACY, AND WISDOM. METAPHORICALLY SPEAKING The distinct symbolism in tigers and torches alludes to the essential balance between progress and history. The tiger represents the bold perspectives and vitality of youth. The torch represents the illumination of life experiences that come with age and maturity. Their roar represents the need to communicate and serves as a call to action to be more engaged in our communities. HISTORICALLY SPEAKING Part of the inspiration for our story comes from the history of Schaeffer Memorial Baptist Church and Christiansburg Institute (CI) in Christiansburg, VA. They epitomize what it means to be living and learning with local Black history. The year 2016 marked the 150 th anniversaries (sesquicentennials) of these local African American historic landmarks. While the Christiansburg Institute was open, the school mascot was a tiger. Today, the Christiansburg Institute Alumni Association uses a tiger in their logo. A green torch logo is used by Christiansburg Institute Incorporated to celebrate the school’s century of education in Montgomery County, VA, to commemorate its rich legacy and to honor the accomplishments made. PERSONALLY SPEAKING We are an atypical mother and daughter pair engaged in our community. We have lived, worked and volunteered together for many years. It’s funny because when we are out and about attending events, meetings or programs separately, one is inevitably asked about the other who is absent. We often have extensive conversations about all kinds of topics and have done so for decades. This was also the case for both of us as we were growing up with our immediate family. THE TIGER & THE TORCH Page | 9

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