BLACK VOICES
05/11/2016 02:29 pm ET

Lezley McSpadden On Memorializing Michael Brown In Beyoncé's 'Lemonade'

She also recently released a memoir about the life and legacy of her son.
Lezley McSpadden wrote about the life and legacy of her son Michael Brown in a new book titled, <i>Tell the Truth &amp; Shame
ASSOCIATED PRESS
Lezley McSpadden wrote about the life and legacy of her son Michael Brown in a new book titled, Tell the Truth & Shame the Devil, which was released on Tuesday and co-written by Lyah Beth LeFlore.

Lezley McSpadden is giving the world a deeper glimpse into her life since the death of her son Michael Brown. 

McSpadden has openly mourned the tragic loss of her son since he was shot and killed by a police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, in August 2014. His untimely death -- and the controversial circumstances that led to it -- are topics she has openly discussed on national television, at various conferences and now in a new memoir titled, Tell the Truth & Shame the Devil: The Life, Legacy, and Love of My Son Michael Brown, which released Tuesday.

She recently also shared her grievances during a special moment in the music video for Beyoncé's song "Freedom," which marked perhaps one of the most powerful scenes from the singer's critically-acclaimed visual album, "Lemonade." McSpadden's touching tribute to her late son in the scene from the video shows her with tears in her eyes as she held a framed picture of her son. According to McSpadden, being featured in "Freedom" was a moment she'll never forget. 

"I felt special," McSpadden told SiriusXM on Tuesday during an emotional interview. She also talked about how Beyoncé left a lasting impression on her. 

"She had done some nice things for my son's foundation so, at that point whatever you want me to do, I'll do it... She's a sweet person... really down to earth," she added. "She treated us well, made sure we were comfortable. I tried to hold it together but, any time I'm talking about my son or looking at a picture I just think that he's gone. I appreciate her for being bold enough to confront things and be sensitive at the same time." 

McSpadden has worked hard to advocate for a better relationship between black communities and law enforcement. She founded an organization called The Michael O.D. Brown We Love Our Sons And Daughters Foundation, which aims to bring about systemic change to justice, health, the environment and family. She also developed the organization's first signature program "Rainbow of Mothers," which was an idea sparked after she met Beyoncé's mother at the "Rally 4 Peace" concert Prince held last year. 

She recalled the defining moment in her book

I felt a light tap and turned to see Beyoncé's mama, Tina Knowles, standing there. She immediately wrapped her arms around me… For the next few minutes she shared something very special with me.

"What are you going to do now? You have to do something," she said, looking me in the eye.

"I know. I started a foundation, but I’m still figurin' it all out," I said.

"Listen, Lezley, there was an organization that started back in the 1980s called Mothers Against Drunk Drivers, MADD. You should look it up. It could inspire you."

McSpadden wrote in her book that she created "Rainbow For Mothers" because she wanted to use her voice and her platform to "bring together a rainbow of mothers from all races and backgrounds who had either lost a child to street violence, gun violence, excessive police force, or just untimely death due to illness."

She has also teamed up with countless moms through her organization to help raise awareness around the issues that led to their children's deaths. She went on to share some very potent advice to all parents and children, too, who may potentially face circumstances similar to her own: 

"I don't want them to be scared," she told SiriusXM. "I want them to be aware." 

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