Ruby was born the eldest eight children. She grew up in poverty. Her parents taught her the importance of prayer and faith. Ruby was one of the first children to integrate the New Orleans schools. On her first day of school she had to be protected by 4 armed marshals. As she walked into school the marshals told her to look straight ahead to try to block out the racist insults. As a young African American child she was treated hatred rooted in prejudice. But Ruby reacted with spirit and grace, becoming a national symbol of the civil rights movement.