Deputy Chairman of the Illinois Chapter of The Black Panther Party, Fred Hampton, was born on August 30,1948 and was raised in the Chicago neighborhood of Maywood, Illinois.
He attended Proviso East High School and became involved in the civil rights movement and joined the Junior NAACP where his dynamic leadership and organizational skills mobilized a group of five hundred young people who successfully lobbied city officials to create better academic services and recreational facilities for Black children.
In 1968, he joined The Black Panther Party (BPP), headquartered in Oakland, California. He formed the “Rainbow Coalition” which included Students for a Democratic Society, the Blackstone Rangers, and the Young Lords. This coalition worked to reach treaties and heighten contradictions that the state exploited.
Under Chairman’s leadership, programs that encouraged self-determination such as The Free Breakfast Program (which fed thousands of children every week), Medical Programs, and transportation programs to get people to/from prisons to visit those held, served thousands of families.
During an early morning police raid on December 4, 1969, Chicago police opened fire on 2337 West Monroe Street (Chairman Fred Hampton Way) assassinating 21 year old Chairman Fred Hampton and Defense Captain Mark Clark. It was proven that the assassinations were planned and carried out with the involvement of Chicago police, State Atty Edward Hanrahan, and J. Edgar Hoover of the FBI under a program called Cointelpro, which specifically targeted The Black Panther Party.
International Revolutionary Day (IRD) acknowledges these assassinations every year on December 4th internationally.