The Washington Post

Fairfax man fought segregation and won

Paul E. Sullivan. (Family photo)

But a white man named Paul E. Sullivan kept fighting. He was the landlord for the rejected family, whose patriarch was a Ph.D. economist, and even though they moved away, Sullivan kept fighting. And four years later, in 1969, the U.S. Supreme Court said he was right and ordered the Little Hunting Park pool association, in the Bucknell Manor section of the Alexandria area, to desegregate. It was an important civil rights case, Sullivan v. Little Hunting Park Inc., if not a shining moment in Northern Virginia racial history.

Paul E. Sullivan, 87, died March 14 at his home in the Alexandria area. This fine obituary by The Post’s Emma Brown makes him seem like a heck of a guy [he had eight kids, so that’s something] and tells this important chapter of our heritage.

Tom Jackman is a native of Northern Virginia and has been covering the region for The Post since 1998.

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