Entertainment And News

Tyre Nichols Was Much More Than A Martyr — Inside The Legacy He Left Behind

Photo: Instagram
Tyre Nichols

If you happen to stumble across Tyre Nichols's photography website, you will find a man who was excited about life and all it had to offer.

A far cry from the 29-year-old beaten and battered martyr who lay in a hospital bed after he was hunted down and brutally beaten, resulting in his untimely death.

RELATED: Cop Called Out By Partner After Touching Woman Inappropriately During Traffic Stop While Child Waits In Car

Tyre Nichols was someone who loved and was loved before his death made him a martyr for a fight that should be long over.  

His website's home page shares a quote that feels so sad when you consider what eventually happened to Tyre.

If you go to his about page, you will find that Nichols was a man with simple, relatable aspirations in life, just like you and me.

He describes himself as an “aspiring photographer” with a love for photography. In his own words, “[It] helps me look at the world in a more creative way.”

“It expresses me in ways I cannot write down for people. My vision is to bring my viewers deep into what I am seeing through my eyes and out through my lens.”

Nichols ends his short autobiographical paragraph by poignantly saying, “I hope to one day let people see what I see and hopefully admire my work based on the quality and ideals.” He signs off, “Your friend, Tyre D. Nichols”.

Unfortunately, for Nichols, that day would never come. Instead of reaching his goal of becoming a renowned photographer, he would go down in history as another Black man who lost his life at the hands of violent, overzealous police officers.

RELATED: Why I'm Thankful I Did Not Have A Black Son

But Tyre Nichols is more than that.

He was a loving son, a doting father, a hard worker, a skateboarder, an artist, a good friend, a free spirit, and a man who wanted nothing more than to make it home so his family on the evening of January 7, 2023.

Nichols was the youngest of four siblings in his family, and typically used his weekends to do laundry, prepare for the week ahead, take flicks, and skateboard.

Nichols had relocated from Sacramento, California to his parent’s home in Memphis, Tennessee, less than one year before his tragic death.

He had a 4-year-old son back in California that he kept in close contact with after he left. His goal was to better himself and be the best father he could to his little boy, his family’s attorney, Ben Crump shared with CNN.

Nichols held a special place in his heart for his mother, RowVaughn Wells, and his son, both of whom he had memorialized with tattoos.

Since arriving in Memphis, he had started working at FedEx and eventually got hired as a full-time employee. His mother recalls him using his lunch break to spend time with her.

His friend, Nate Spates, Jr. shared that Nichols and his group of friend has a ritual of meeting each other at Starbucks in the morning. There they put their phones away and enjoyed each other’s company.

RELATED: Tyre Nichols Is Another Victim Of A Flawed System — The Race Of The Police Officers Involved Is Irrelevant

Outside of skating, Nichols biggest passion was taking pictures of the world around him.

He especially loved snapping photos at sunset, something he had just finished doing when his life was tragically taken from him.

Nichols expressed that he wanted to be known for the beautiful pictures he took and it’s a shame that he has achieved in death what he never got the chance to attain in life.

Nichols has since been laid to rest in a homegoing celebration attended by thousands of people including friends, family, activists, and strangers.

But his legacy lives of kindheartedness, acceptance, and love lives on in everyone that knew him as he lived, and those of us who are just getting to know him after he died.

Now Nichols's mother will have to live with the fact that she will never hear his voice again or hear him coming home after a long day’s work or a trip to the park to practice his skateboarding tricks or take photos at the perfect sunset moment.

His son is deprived of a father who would have cared for him, guided him, and loved him unconditionally.

The Nichols family has set up a GoFundMe to raise money to support his loved ones and build a memorial skate park in his name.  

Tyre Nichols and all of the other human beings whose lives were taken by those sworn to protect and serve the community deserved to grow old.

Their names will live on in our hearts and minds forever.

RELATED: Overprotective Cop Arrests His Daughter & Her Boyfriend Then Threatens To 'Make Up' Charges After Tracking Her

NyRee Ausler is a writer from Seattle, Washington, and author of seven books. She covers lifestyle and entertainment and news, as well as navigating the workplace and social issues.