ARLINGTON, Texas — Texas native Opal Lee, known as the "Grandmother of Juneteenth," threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Texas Rangers game on Friday night.
Lee, 95, and other local civil rights organizations were in attendance at Globe Life Field to celebrate Jackie Robinson Day. April 15, 2022, marks 75 years since Robinson became the first Black baseball player in the major league in the modern era.
All MLB players, coaches and other staff wore the number 42 on Friday in honor of Robinson.
Lee, who calls Fort Worth home, is known for her 40-year push to make Juneteenth a national holiday. Juneteenth is meant to mark the day when slavery ended and the Emancipation Proclamation was officially recognized in Texas on June 19, 1865.
Her work paid off when President Joe Biden signed a bill in June 2021 to make Juneteenth a federal holiday. Lee attended the signing of the bill in person.
Her recognition didn't stop there.
Earlier this year, members of Congress went a step further and sought to nominate Lee for a Nobel Peace Prize. Texas congressman Marc Veasey and 33 other members sent a letter to the prize committee to nominate her for the 2022 award.
"Her tireless efforts over the decades and her work to advance understanding and respect between individuals of different backgrounds and socioeconomic levels along with her continuing mission to equality is why we members of Congress proudly nominate Ms. Opal Lee for the Nobel Peace Prize," the letter stated.