The Denna & Estella Strickland Story: Lost, But Not Forgotten

On Saturday, October 15, 2022, CRRJ joined the family and descendants of Denna and Estella Strickland to honor their lives and legacy.

On October 17, 1932, 52-year-old Denna Strickland and her daughter, 25-year-old Estella Strickland, were killed in their Coweta County home by a law enforcement officer. Bailiff Sam Thompson arrived at the Strickland home, accompanied by civilians Cecil Hunter and Theo McDonald, to arrest Denna’s son for damages from an automobile accident several days prior, damages which had already been repaired by the Stricklands. According to newspaper accounts, the men searched the Strickland home and threatened to arrest members of the family. Thompson shot and killed Denna and Estella Strickland when they attempted to protest.

Ninety years later, CRRJ partnered with members of the Strickland family to
plan a commemorative event that brought together more than 40 members of the Strickland family, along with CRRJ Program Director Katie Sandson, CRRJ Elizabeth Zitrin fellow Malcolm Clarke, CRRJ student investigator Dakotah Kennedy, Coweta County councilmember Al Smith, Reverend Skip Mason of the West Mitchell Church in Atlanta, and members of the community. Following the commemorative service, the family placed flowers on the graves of Denna Strickland, her husband Ector Strickland, and their nine children, including Estella.

Read more about the event here in the Atlanta Daily World.

Performance by Jackie Foster
Remarks by Tammy Saunders
Remarks by William Hill
Andy Foster delivered a poem of dedication and presented a plaque to Josie S. Bailey, granddaughter of Denna and Ector Strickland.
Members of the Strickland family placed flowers on the graves of Denna and Estella Strickland.
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