Hundreds honor MLK in celebrations around Memphis - WMC Action News 5 - Memphis, Tennessee

Hundreds honor MLK in celebrations around Memphis

On the holiday honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Memphians marched down the same streets Dr. King marched during the fight for civil rights. On the holiday honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Memphians marched down the same streets Dr. King marched during the fight for civil rights.

By Ben Watson and Jamel Major

MEMPHIS, TN (WMC-TV) - Hundreds marched Monday in honor of a fallen civil rights icon.  On the holiday honoring Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Memphians marched down the same streets Dr. King marched during the fight for civil rights.

"There would have been no civil rights bill, there wouldn't have been no voting rights bill and we would not have had a Barack Obama in the White House," parade organizer Dr. Isaac Richmond said.

And every year for the past 25 years, the city where Dr. King was assassinated has honored him with a parade.

"This is very important that we show our support that we show our participation," participant Debbie Freiden said. "We show up; we stand together."

Clara White joined the crowd in her wheelchair as he recalled the time before Dr. King.

"You couldn't eat in a lot of different stores, and you couldn't sit at the lunch counter, and stuff like that," she said.

Many of the marchers in Monday's parade were not even born when King was assassinated, but they were there to show their support for the Dreamer and his dream of equality.

"I think there is still a need to preserve and keep going what Dr. King started," said student and participant Regina Smith.

Meanwhile, hundreds lined up outside the National Civil Rights Museum, waiting for an opportunity to get inside to tour the facility, the place where the civil rights icon took his last breath.

"Celebrating his memorial and his amazing life," said Madison Snipes, Miss Teen Memphis.  "He really did make a difference."

For many, it was a chance honor what Dr. King stood for and to celebrate his life and legacy.

"He fought for the rights of blacks and whites to be together, so we should honor that," Jocelyn Stone said.

"It's important, because we look back then and we see how things have changed so much, but we still have to realize we're one people," David Carr added.

Visitors to the museum expressed profound respect for a pioneer of the civil rights movement who meant so much to so many.

"He inspired me so much," Carr said. "He's just a one of a kind man, and I know he had power from God."

As they paused to remember Martin Luther King, many Memphians said they were looking to the future, vowing to continue the work of the Dreamer and his dream.

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