Last Updated March 22, 2023.
In this section, Alex Haley delves into his two-year relationship with Malcolm X, initially facing reluctance from Malcolm to share personal aspects of his life. Nonetheless, Haley's inquisitive and considerate approach allowed Malcolm to open up, revealing his life as a child, criminal, and ultimately, a powerful political activist and African-American leader. Haley and Malcolm forged a deep bond as they spent numerous hours together, with Malcolm confiding in Haley about his ominous premonition of being killed by Nation of Islam followers.
Haley provides an in-depth chronicle of the aftermath of Malcolm X's assassination at the Audubon Ballroom on February 21, 1965. Despite being shot 16 times, Malcolm was transported to Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital, where he was pronounced dead upon arrival.
Multiple churches in Harlem declined to host Malcolm's funeral, which ultimately took place at the Church of God in Christ in Harlem. Bishop Childs, who led the service, received a barrage of bomb threats targeting his church and residence.
Various influential African American figures mourned Malcolm X's passing, such as Dr. Kenneth B. Clark, a renowned psychologist; James Baldwin, a writer and playwright; Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., a celebrated civil rights advocate; James Farmer, the National Director of CORE (Congress of Racial Equality); and numerous other national and global leaders.