SO dedicates tennis courts to Kenneth Graham

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SOUTH ORANGE, NJ — On Saturday, Sept. 29, South Orange dedicated its new tennis courts to Kenneth Graham, a lifelong South Orange resident who coached tennis in the community for several decades. The event featured the unveiling of two new signs, as well as a tennis tournament.

“It was through the words and written testimony of family and friends that Kenny’s lasting and loving memory came to life from recent stories to ones that left an imprint on the hearts of so many people 50 years ago. I learned so much about the painful and discriminatory culture of tennis in our town, well before I was even born, where it wasn’t a sport open to many due to their race or religion. People now in their 50s noted how as kids, Kenny made tennis accessible at these public courts to anyone and everyone who had a passion to play — that continued for decades until his passing,” village President Sheena Collum said.

The new Kenneth Allen Graham Tennis Courts mark the first place in town to be named after a person of African-American descent.

Photos Courtesy of Sheena Collum