How and when does Grandma India die?

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seaofknowledge's profile pic

seaofknowledge | (Level 2) Assistant Educator

Posted on

Grandma India dies due to leukemia ("blood cancer" -- cancer affecting blood cells or bone marrow) in October, 1958.

Warriors Don't Cry is about Melba, one of nine African American students to attend an all-white High School for the process of integration in 1957. She had a terrible time there because of racist attacks and there were many times that Melba wanted to give up and leave. Her grandmother, Grandma India, became her strength and pushed her to continue going to school and resist wrongful actions in peaceful ways. So for example, if someone mistreated her, made a terrible remark or attacked her, she would not respond or fight. She put up a quiet fight, one that was very important. African Americans and Whites had to learn to live together and get along. 

When Grandma India died one year later due to cancer, it became more difficult for Melba because she had lost her strength that her grandmother had always renewed in her. But she never forgot what her grandmother taught her and went on to become a journalist.

mlsldy3's profile pic

mlsldy3 | Elementary School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

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Warriors Don't Cry is an autobiography by Melba Patillo Beals. It tells the story of her and eight other black students, who integrate into high school in 1958. Melba tells us about the struggles they went through, and the victories they had. There were many people in Melba's life that helped her, but none quite as much as her Grandma India.

Grandma India was the strength behind Melba during this time. Melba was scared about going to an all white high school, and Grandma India was her backbone. She never let Melba feel like she couldn't do this. Grandma India has a great faith and stubbornness that she passes on the Melba. Grandma India has great faith in God. She also is not afraid to speak up to white people if she felt the need to do so. She gave Melba great encouragement. On September 23, 1957 Melba and the other students entered Little Rock's Central High School. Melba soon found out she had to become more than just a teenager. Grandma India told her that God's warriors don't cry. This gave Melba the name for her book. Grandma India taught Melba to be strong and fight for what was right and to have faith in God. Grandma India was diagnosed with leukemia and in October, 1958 she died. It would have been Melba's second year at Central High School.

Warriors Don't Cry is an amazing story of courage and faith. It shows the ugliness that went along with segregation and also shows the beauty of the people who fought so hard for the rights of all people. Grandma India was an amazing woman, who left her mark on Melba forever. 

user2262953's profile pic

user2262953 | eNotes Newbie

Posted on

 Grandma India dies during what would have been Melba’s second year at Central because she thinks  Melba has lost her will to fight.

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