COLUMBUS, Miss. (WLBT) - Mississippi State University star running back Kylin Hill received a key to his hometown, Columbus, on Tuesday.
Hill generated much controversy in June when he took a strong stance against the Mississippi flag. He called for Governor Tate Reeves to change the flag or he would no longer represent the state.
Despite the controversy, Hill was commended for his bravery. A special ceremony was held for him as he was presented a key to the city by Columbus Mayor Robert Smith and other leaders.
“You know growing up in Columbus, MS, this right here is a huge accomplishment,” Hill said. “The flag situation is something that I always used to look at. It always used to get to me, and I said we have all these big-time athletes who have a voice but won’t speak on it, and I said why not me? That’s the thing, you can’t be scared to speak up. Being scared to speak up, and the situation will never get handled.”
Several days after Hill spoke out in June, athletic directors and coaches from eight of Mississippi’s public universities went to the State Capitol to take a stand against the state flag.
After much deliberation, the Mississippi Legislature voted on a bill on June 30 to change the flag.
The state flag was officially retired on July 1. Mississippi is now without a flag until a vote is done in November.