LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) - Little Rock Nine member Jefferson Thomas has died at age 67 in Columbus, Ohio.
Fellow Little Rock Nine member Carlotta Walls LaNier said in a statement Monday that Thomas died Sunday from pancreatic cancer.
In 1957, Thomas and LaNier joined Elizabeth Eckford, Minnijean Brown Trickey, Gloria Ray Karlmark, Thelma Mothershed Wair, Terrence Roberts, Melba Patillo Beals and Ernest Green in becoming the first black students to attend Little Rock Central High School.
President Dwight Eisenhower dispatched the 101st Airborne to escort the students after Gov. Orval Faubus tried to prevent them from enrolling at the school.