The Rev. Kenneth Walton, Jr., pointed out that Monday was a two-fold celebration — it is Martin Luther King Day, but is also the day President Barack Obama is inaugurated for the second time.
“It should be etched in history,” he said.
Walton spoke to a crowd of about 35 people at Bunert Park Monday morning beneath sunny skies, although a brisk winter wind kept many in the audience huddled in their coats.
“All we need to do is reflect a few days,” Walton said. “You didn’t always have what you have. You didn’t always have the opportunities that you have now,” he said.
He advised the young people in the audience to become more rooted, to pull up their pants and live right because they can’t predict what plans God has for them. MLK and Obama didn’t know they were destined for greatness, but Obama lived right and was led to become president.
“The dreamer may sleep but the dream lives on,” he said.
The event was sponsored by the Navarro County branch of the NAACP, and organized by Elmeree Burrell. President of the local chapter, Rowena Winfrey, spoke briefly about the things for which she is grateful. Among the things she thanked God for was the opportunity to stand up without fear of reprisal and speak her mind, for her parents who taught her she was as good as anyone else.
“Let everybody know not only are we learning about Dr. King, we are doing what Dr. King wanted us to do,” Winfrey said.
Also participating in the annual celebration were Faith Holt, the Rev. Dairy Johnson, Ruby Williams, Cathy Douglas, Darlene Jackson and Penny Liggins, Warner Redus, Barbara Kelley, and Sirvella Monie.
Klinton Wright, 17, has been to the MLK rally a number of times in the past. “It’s a tradition,” he said. He said he thought he’d continue it when he got to be his parents’ ages, as well.
“I just want to keep the tradition going through the generations,” he said.
For 9-year-old Savanna Woodard, the rally was worthwhile, even if it hadn’t been exactly her idea to attend.
“I learned that Martin Luther King was a great man,” she said. “If it weren’t for him, the world would be upside down.”
Janet Jacobs may be reached via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org. Want to “sound off” to this article? E-mail: Soundoff@corsicanadailysun.com