Mildred Loving hadn’t intended to be a trailblazer.
She simply wanted to live her life with the man she loved in a quiet part of Caroline County.
But Mildred was black, and her husband, Richard, was white. And in 1958, laws in Virginia forbade such a pairing.
Their arrest and prosecution for violating the state’s ban on interracial marriage would thrust the couple into the national spotlight, where they would ultimately change those laws for good.
Mildred Loving died Friday at the home in Central Point she fought so hard to return to. She was 68.
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UPDATE: AP has a story:
In a rare interview with The Associated Press last June, Loving said she wasn’t trying to change history — she just wanted to get married.
UPDATE #2: AP has a longer story now:
Peggy Fortune said Loving, 68, died Friday at her home in rural Milford. She did not disclose the cause of death.
“I want (people) to remember her as being strong and brave yet humble — and believed in love,” Fortune told The Associated Press.
Her husband died in 1975. Shy and soft-spoken, Loving shunned publicity and in a rare interview with The Associated Press last June, insisted she never wanted to be a hero — just a bride.
“It wasn’t my doing,” Loving said. “It was God’s work.”
Richard Loving died in a car accident that also injured his wife. “They said I had to leave the state once, and I left with my wife,” he told the Star in 1965. “If necessary, I will leave Virginia again with my wife, but I am not going to divorce her.”