On June 20, 1981, Philonise O’Neil Floyd, was the fourth child born to the late, Mrs. Larcenia “Ms. Cissy” Jones on Fort Hood army base. Raised in the Third Ward area of Houston, Texas. He attended Jack Yates High School and Texas Southern University pursuing a degree in Criminal Justice. In 2014, Floyd started his professional driving career with C. R. England one of the nation’s largest refrigerated carriers; later accepted a position with W. M. Dewy and Son, Inc. hauling custom pipes to their specific destinations.
On May 26, 2020, Floyd learned that his older brother, George “Perry” Floyd, Jr. had been murdered by four police officers in Minneapolis after a store clerk alleged that he passed a counterfeit $20 bill. The world watched as named officer, Derek Chauvin knelt on Floyd’s neck for 8 minutes and 46 seconds.
Across the United States and internationally, George’s death sparked a world-wide outpour of protests against police brutality, especially toward black people. The day after laying George to rest, June 10, 2020 Philonise testified before United States Congress urging them to “Do the right thing” by passing the Justice in Police Act of 2020 baring choke holds, creating a registry to track officers with serious misconduct records, and lift certain legal protections that now makes it hard to go after officers in court for using excessive force.
Philonise’s life as a professional transporter drastically changed forever. Floyd vowed that George’s death would not be in vain, another hashtag on a t-shirt and begun to tirelessly advocate to change systematic racism and the challenges faced due to police injustice that has for over 400 years led to the harassment and killing of African Americans at the hands of police.