As her two boys get older, Stephanie Reid wants them to know about their African-American roots and the history of blacks in the U.S.

“I basically want them to know where we started from and all the struggles we’ve had to go through,” Reid said. “And how blessed they are today that they have all the freedoms that they do.”

She brought her boys to the third annual African-American Read-In, hosted by Create-A-Smile, Saturday at the Killeen Community Center. The African-American Read-In, sponsored by the Black Caucus of the National Council of Teachers of English, is an international literacy event held annually since 1991.

Saturday’s workshop provided about 25 children with personalized books about African-American history and heroes.

“It inspires them to want to read a lot more,” said retired Sgt. 1st Class Frankie Williams, owner of Create-A-Smile. “Reading is the foundation of who you are. If your reading is not up to capacity (or grade-level) as you enter the adult world, then you’ll already start off at disadvantage.”

Williams wanted to give back to the community during Black History Month.

Daniel Reid, 11, is starting to embark on an age where he is more cognizant of his heritage.

As he walked around the room viewing walls lined with pictures and mini-biographies of blacks who made significant contributions in history, Daniel learned more about his origins and where his ancestors came from.

“It’s to know how I got all the freedoms I have today,” Daniel said.

Contact Sarah Rafique at or (254) 501-7549. Follow her on Twitter at KDHreporter.

I'm the education reporter at the Killeen Daily Herald. Follow me on Twitter at

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