Righting a wrong: Grandmother is now a Girl Scout - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Righting a wrong: Grandmother is now a Girl Scout

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - A local grandmother is a Girl Scout decades after she was turned away from her school troop because she is black and her daughter made it happen.

On Friday, a special ceremony for one shows how a local troop is righting a wrong to rewrite history.

Daphyne Watson thought she was attending a little girl's investiture ceremony in her granddaughter's troop 4044 until her daughter, Sophonya Simpson-Adams took the stage in the Frances Parker Auditorium.

“In 1960 a young second grade girl named Daphyne Watson looked for forward to joining her scout in Long Island,” said Simpson-Adams.

The daughter is also a troop 4044 leader and takes the audience back to 1961 when her mother's second grade teacher in Long Island denied her the right to join the Girl Scouts.

“I kept on saying ‘why?' and then I started crying and she said, ‘because we don't have black girls in Girl Scouts,'” said Watson.

Daphyne, the Executive Director at Mental Health of America didn't tell her daughter the story until recently.

“I was sad for her and my heart really ached for her, my mother is a strong woman, she is a leader, I just couldn't imagine someone telling her she could not have the same opportunities as everyone else and it was really heartbreaking to hear that,” said Simpson-Adams.

So she shared the story with other troop leaders and Girl Scouts.

“I just knew that it is right for her to become a Girl Scout because she wasn't treated right in the old days,” said 7-year-old Keira Dunn.

The second-graders knew denying a girl to join the troop isn't the Girl Scout Motto.

“You should be fair with every people and you shouldn't judge people by their skin,” said Girl Scout members, Ella Kim and Anna Frost.

Fifty-four years later, Girl Scout Troop 4044 inducted Daphyne Watson into their troop.

“Once a Girl Scout, Always a Girl Scout.”

Ms. Watson says in this moment took her back to 1961 and why she wanted to be a part of the Girl Scouts of the USA.

“It did take me back to when I was a little girl and I was looking at the other little girls sitting in front of me and I was saying what a great group of young women that I could be a part of that,” said Watson.

After the troops presented Watson with a sashful of patches for her lifetime achievements she walked across the bridge to be officially be a Girl Scout, “To help people of all times and to live by the Girl Scout law."

“If I can support them in any way to develop and blossom to the best they can be I think I've done something as a Girl Scout,” said Watson.

During that time some communities across the country did not honor the Girl Scouts anti-discrimination policy.

Before the 1950's some troops were segregated by race but the Girl Scouts say since its inception in 1912 all girls of different ethnicities are accepted.

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