In 1958, he accused the NBA of using a quota system to limit the number of Black players on each team. He took part in civil rights marches with the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. but questioned the nonviolent strategy of the movement, arguing that African Americans had a right to defend themselves. When civil rights leader Medgar Evers was assassinated in Jackson, Miss., in 1963, Mr. Russell accepted an offer by Evers’s older brother, Charles, to run a youth basketball camp in Jackson, to bring White and Black children together. He received death threats but refused to back away from his views.

There’s so many that were touched and inspired by Bill Russell.  In 2011, President Barack Obama awarded Russell the Medal of Freedom. Obama took to social media saying “Today, we lost a giant,  As tall as Bill Russell stood, his legacy rises far higher—both as a player and as a person.”  Rest in Paradise Bill Russell!