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Laurel County celebrates the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

By: Erika Glover Email
By: Erika Glover Email

LAUREL Co., Ky. (WYMT) - Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., once said, "Life's most persistent and urgent question is: 'What are you doing for others?'"

On Monday Americans across the country did their best to implement Dr. King's message.

The Laurel County African American Heritage Center hosted their 8th annual celebration, teaching young people the importance of the civil rights leader.

Host Marjorie Van Diver stressed the importance of keeping Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s dream alive.

Diver recalled demonstrators walking from Selma, Alabama to Montgomery, Alabama in 1965.

Protesters were demanding the right to vote for black people.

"I myself lived through this," Diver said. "I was 13-years-old when all the marches down in Montgomery, Alabama took place."

She says we have come far, but said we have a ways to go.

"If it had not been for Martin Luther King Jr. and the Freedom Riders I would not be able to have the job or do the things that I do today," Diver said.

Center Director Wayne Riley said their emphasis is always on the kids.

"As far as I'm concerned, not just with the Martin Luther King Day program, but with the center at large the kids are the future," Riley said.

Group leaders said we should all embrace Dr. King's message of equality.

"We need to come together as a community and be a people of one," Wayne Riley said.

President Ronald Reagan signed Martin Luther King Day into law as a holiday in 1983.

It was observed for the first time on January 20, 1986.

The first time all 50 states celebrated the holiday was in 2000.

For more information about The Laurel County African American Heritage Center, visit www.lcaahc.com.

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