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A 91-Year Old Imam Still Finds Joy In The Podcast Studio

Abdur-Rahim Rashada survived World War II, Jim Crow, and then converting to Islam. Hear his story on See Something Say Something.

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You probably know of some of the more famous members of the Nation of Islam, like Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, and maybe even Elijah Muhammad.

This week on See Something Say Something, Ahmed introduces the world to another former Nation of Islam convert, Imam Abdur-Rahim Rashada, the "first Muslim" in Saginaw, Michigan.

The show travelled to Brother Rashada's house in Saginaw to hear his story that follows over 90 years of American history.

Meg Cramer / BuzzFeed

Brother Rashada has seen a lot in his life. He served in the Navy during World War II. He survived and escaped the Jim Crow South. He worked for GM in it's Saginaw factory, and saw the company’s rise and fall in Michigan. And then, he joined the Nation of Islam, attracted by their message of freedom, justice, and equality for African Americans. And later, when the community moved towards Sunnism, he learned to adapt to a broader community of immigrant Muslims. In 1988, he met Ahmed when he had his first aqiqah (first haircut) at the mosque in Saginaw.

Take a listen to what attracted Brother Rashada to the Nation of Islam below...

At 91 Abdurrahim Rashada has lived a lot, he served the navy in WW2, survived the Jim Crow South, & here he is on w… https://t.co/yS7VeU0PEq

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Ahmed Ali Akbar is a podcast host for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Ahmed Ali Akbar at ahmed.akbar@buzzfeed.com.

Contact See Something Say Something at meg.cramer+ssss@buzzfeed.com.

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