BRYAN, Texas — Tensions rose across the country as protesters decried police brutality following George Floyd’s death last week, but some are calling for peaceful demonstrations, including some of Floyd’s children.
Hundreds of people were at a Black Lives Matter demonstration Sunday in Bryan, Texas, including Quincy Mason Floyd, one of George Floyd’s sons.
“I’m really excited about all this,” Floyd said. “Everyone is coming out and showing him love. I love this. My heart is really touched by all this.”
Floyd and his sister, Connie Mason Floyd, moved from Houston to Bryan with their mother more than 15 years ago. Floyd said he was a young child, about 4 or 5 years old, when he last saw his father. It wasn’t until after Memorial Day when news of George Floyd’s death in police custody in Minneapolis made it to his son.
“I didn’t recognize who it was until Mom called and told me,” he said. “She said, ‘Do you know who that guy was?’ I said no. she said, ‘That’s your father.'”
Floyd said people in Bryan have been surprised to learn about the local connection to this international story. He said some people at first questioned it.
“They kept asking, ‘Do you have any proof?’ and I said ‘Yeah, look at my face and look at his face,'” he said. “You can tell.”
Both Floyd and his sister praised local protesters for hosting peaceful demonstrations and denounced the violence that has unfolded in other cities.
“The violence is not the right way to do it,” Connie Mason Floyd said. “Now, this is beautiful, but the violence, it won’t solve nothing.”
“Tearing up things, it’s not going to solve anything,” Quincy Mason Floyd said. “My dad is in peace and we have to be the ones to deal with all this stress. It’s going to be tough to get over this day by day.”
The two plan to be in Houston on Monday to visit with other members of the extended family and hope to have news to share soon about funeral arrangements for Floyd, who will be buried in the Houston area.