John Guyton

As Interviewed by Noah Shimizu, March 6, 2013
"When you went to football games, you look up in the stands and everybody was black. But we knew that was a way of life."
John Guyton

Introductory Profile: About John Guyton

John Guyton grew up in Austin and works at Austin Community College as a maintenance director at the Eastview campus, and is content with his life. He is very laid back, and doesn't mind talking about his past. He remembers being a child in Austin, where he was part of the black community, and the hardships he faced. He was always accepting of the separate unequal situation in segregated Austin. He is a prime example of a man who grew up in a unfair community but came out perfectly fine.

John grew up in Austin and did suffer from discrimination. He grew up downtown in a neighborhood specifically for African Americans. He went through elementary, middle, and high school in segregated schools. He did not go to college because if he knew he was going to be drafted because of the Vietnam War, so he joined the U.S. Marines instead.

He has short, mostly white hair, is tall, and has a large frame. At first, his body makes him seem intimidating but once I started talking with him I felt more relaxed and welcomed.

John was nice and understanding. He did not have much trouble remembering his days as a child, nor did he have trouble saying it out loud to me. At first, I myself was nervous because I was afraid something would go wrong. But looking back now, I realize that it was more me who messed up after misreading questions and repetitively stuttering. Once the questions came out of my mouth, John started talking and the interview became very relaxed. Once in awhile he paused to think, but after pausing he answered the questions clearly. The interview wasnít perfect (mainly due to me being not being better prepared) but turned out to be a fun and interesting experience for me.

John still clearly remembers his childhood. I think his faith in his religion is the main reason he can be happy and not still angry over the subject, and is also able to talk about it. He is never in a rush or in a hurry, so he doesn't mind being interviewed. At an older age, he is very content and happy, even after all of the hardships he has faced. Although the interview was short, it seems the time Iíve known him is long.