Banks-Caddell a natural name for new elementary
Naming Decatur's newest elementary school began like avalanches begin — quietly — then formed so quickly that there was no stopping it.
So, less than a week after the deaths of two of the city's most influential citizens, the new school at Fourth Avenue and Gordon Drive Southeast is now Banks-Caddell Elementary School.
The significance of naming the school in memory of educator and civic leader Athelyne Banks and attorney and community icon John A. Caddell goes deeper than giving the building an identity.
Miss Banks, black, Mr. Caddell, white, are symbols of a community that is finally dealing with its racial past.
Not many Southern cities with Decatur's racial composition can boast of having a black City Council president, a black police chief and a black city clerk.
Miss Banks, 98, and Mr. Caddell, 95, helped create an atmosphere of racial harmony and equality in Decatur.