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Perry County group marches to commemorate MLK day

By: Tanner Hesterberg Email
By: Tanner Hesterberg Email

HAZARD, Ky. (WYMT) - Hundreds of people across eastern Kentucky participated in events Monday honoring the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

One group in Perry County - comprised of more than 50 people from different age and ethnic backgrounds - marched through downtown Hazard singing spirituals and reminding themselves of why King first began his movement more than 50 years ago.

"I was born in the 50s and lived in the 60s when integration actually took place," said Rev. Lowell Parker, who participated in Monday's march. "You recognize that if you don't remember the past, you may have to relive it."

That's a message the adults in the march tried to convey to the younger generation.

"It could happen again, but at the same time it shouldn't happen because of what Dr. King and others have done to bring this to the forefront," Parker said.

Even though King spent most of his time in the deep South, some eastern Kentuckians are still feeling the impact of his cause.

"Since I was a very young girl visiting with my dad at NAACP meetings in Hazard," recalled march participant Ludrenia Hagans-Shepherd. "It has meant to me that this was very important and a very purpose of man to continue working on that."

Juan Pena from the Kentucky Commission on Human Rights was a guest speaker at a ceremony held after the march.

"To remember the legacy of Dr. King helps us move forward," Pena said. "And work toward those principles that everybody should have equal opportunities to excel in life to become very productive citizens in their communities."

An idea those some folks in Perry County believe is worth marching for.


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