WILMINGTON – Family and friend honored the life of Wilmington Ten member Connie Tindall Friday in Wilmington.
Members of the Wilmington Ten along with friends and family gathered for Tindall's funeral. Tindall along with nine others spent time behind bars in the 1970's after they were convicted of burning down a store. The federal court later overturned their convictions, but never received an official pardon.
Those closest to Tindall say he passed too soon.
"Never seeing what he wanted more than anything, seeing his name cleared from the state of North Carolina for crimes he did not commit as a member of the Wilmington Ten," said Cash Michaels, of the Wilmington Ten Project.
After the ceremony, fellow Wilmington Ten member Willie Vereen saw the silver lining amid the sadness of Tindall's death.
"A lot more people are going to be more interested in signing the petition for us to be pardoned and reconciled. That day will come," said Vereen.
A petition to ask Gov. Bev Perdue for an official pardon has received an uptick in signatures since the Tindall's passing. A decision about the pardons is not expected until November.