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My earliest memories of Martin Luther King Day include my Dad sitting us down as a family to express his gratitude for the late Reverend. Sure, years later the public school system would try to teach us the ins and outs on the civil rights movement…but my Dad was insistent that we were taught its importance, among many other things, at home. He told us stories on how they, he and my Mom, joined with Blacks worldwide some years ago in protest to make MLK day a holiday. Image that! As a kid I was so proud that my own parents had stood for a cause so great, and I wanted to be as great as Dr. King was. I secretly wished I could march too.

Every MLK day we would go down to Martin Luther King Jr Blvd and watch the parade every year! Marching Bands, Candy, Hot chocolate, non profits and peace organizations were everywhere! People of all colors could be seen on this day, celebrating the dream Dr. King spoke of and the legacy he’d left behind in his quest for equality.

I’m an adult now, and the parade doesn’t seem as great as it used to. Dad hasn’t been up to it since his stroke, but my sister and I still go every year. It’s like our little way to say thank you to all the men and women who died for us to be seen as equal. Thank you to all those who marched to keep Dr. King’s dream alive. Thank you Dad for teaching us the importance of spreading love and standing up for what we believe to be right.

Thank You, Dr. King.

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