Historical marker unveiled to honor ETSU pioneers

East Tennessee State University unveiled and dedicated a commemorative fountain and historical marker honoring five students.

Eugene Caruthers, Elizabeth Watkins Crawford, Clarence McKinney, George Nichols and Mary Luellen Owens Wagner.

Those students desegregated the school in the late 1950.

Nichols says, while he was a part of many firsts as a student, solider and banker, he credits those who came before him with his success.

"I don't look at myself as a pioneer because I'm standing on the shoulders of a lot of people. I just opened my little door, or our little door. There were five of us, and we opened a little door to allow others to be able to come to this institution," said George Nichols from the Class of 1962.

The ceremony was supposed to take place by the fountain, but was moved inside because of the snow.

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