Soweto Eyewitness - Antoinette Sithole

Hector Pieterson was a twelve-year-old student on the first day of the Soweto Uprising.  His then-seventeen-year-old sister, Antoinette, was shocked when she saw her little brother among the gathering crowd.  He was too young to understand what was going on.

Suddenly ... shots rang out.  Hector Pieterson was hit with a bullet, thereafter scooped-up by someone Antoinette did not know.  At first, she didn't understand why this stranger was running with her brother in his arms.  Then she saw the blood. 

Hector died that day - June 16, 1976 - one of the first victims of the Soweto Uprising. 

Years later, Antoinette is curator of the Hector Pieterson Museum in Soweto.  She relates what happened the day her brother died and tells the story behind the iconic picture which was seen around the world. 

Because of the photo, she says, people everywhere began to understand how apartheid was ripping South Africa apart.  That fact alone, says Antoinette, means her brother did not die in vain.

Media Credits

Video clip of Antoinette Sithole, sister of Hector Pieterson, at Winston Salem State University (WSSU).  Online, courtesy WSSU Rampages - Ram ReelWSSUrampages's Channel at YouTube.


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"Soweto Eyewitness - Antoinette Sithole" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Nov 21, 2019.
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