Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry

Describe the attack on the Berrys and the reasons behind it

it's from the story "Roll Of Thunder, Hear Me Cry

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Mrs. Lanier says that Henrietta Toggins, who is related to the Berrys, was with them in John Henry's Model T when it happened. They had stopped for gas and some drunk white men came by and said: "That's the nigger Sallie Ann said was flirtin' with her." Henrietta made John Henry and his brother Beacon get in the car and drive off without filling up on gas. After they dropped her off at home, the three white men caught up with them and kept hitting the back of the car. Knowing he didn't have enough gas to get home, John Henry stopped at his uncle's. The white men dragged John Henry and Beacon out of the house and when their uncle tried to stop them, lit all three of them on fire.


The reasons behind the attack were racially motivated; it was a hate crime.