TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV)– It was an emotional weekend for Terry Ward.

As he watched coverage following the release of bodycam footage showing the incident that led to Tyre Nichols death– and five Memphis police officers being charged with second-degree murder– he was nearly brought to tears.

“I am so sorry for the young man’s death,” Ward, a Terre Haute native, said. “As I watched the interview, it brought tears to my eyes, because I’m a father of Black men, I’m a grandfather of Black men.”

The violence hit home for Ward, who has spent time the past few years uncovering the story of his great-grandfather George Ward. George was lynched in Terre Haute in 1901, and the city has unveiled a marker in Fairbanks Park honoring him and his story.

Over 120 years later, Ward said it was sad to see the violence continue– and put out a plea for compassion around the country.

“We’re human beings just like everybody else,” he said. “We want to be respected, we want to be treated equal, we want to love one another and we want people to love us.”

Crystal Reynolds, a Terre Haute resident and local historian, said the video was too traumatic for her to watch. But upon its release, she reached out to her son– a Black man who’s close in age to Nichols– and reiterated a point she’s been making to him for decades.

“I called him and we had the talk. I thought it was important to once again have the talk, and this is the same talk we had since he was six years old about being careful and about the realities of America,” she said.

As far as what comes next, Ward said he hopes to see changes to policing on a federal level to make consequences in this instances consistent across the country. Reynolds said she it comes down to two things for her– value and education.

“Everybody has value. We all have value. We need to continue to have discussions on the importance of valuing everyone, what everybody brings to the table regardless of your background,” she said.

She believes education plays a vital role in that– and she hopes African-American history, as well as the history of other groups and cultures, can be universally taught in classrooms.

“We need to make sure that from elementary, middle school, high school and college, the African-American story is part of the curriculum, and that’s so important. Not just the African-American curriculum, but the cultures of all people,” she said.

Ward and Reynolds were joined by a nation that grieved– which Reynolds said was the focus in the immediate aftermath of the release of the video.

“All people grieved. When this happened to him, this affected people of all race and creed,” she said. “We all grieved for the family and for the victim, because this isn’t just a Black tragedy, it’s an American tragedy.”