Honoring Dr. King
By Catharin Shepard
Published in News on January 19, 2009 1:46 PM
Ariel McNar, 6, looks at a photo of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during the annual breakfast celebration of the civil rights leader at the Goldsboro-Raleigh District Assembly this morning.
Goldsboro Mayor Al King addresses a crowd during the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. breakfast celebration at the Goldsboro-Raleigh District Assembly on Monday morning.
The Braswell sisters Danesia, 7, Shakira, 11, and Tamia, 9, perform during the annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr breakfast celebration at the Goldsboro-Raleigh District Assembly on Monday morning.
Heavy morning fog and threatening clouds didn't dissuade a crowd of nearly 600 people this morning from attending the 22nd annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. birthday celebration at the Goldsboro-Raleigh District Assembly.
Children as young as 6 and senior citizens alike came together to commemorate Martin Luther King Jr. Day with speakers, music and breakfast.
"Some people have come every year we've been doing this," said LaTerrie Ward, director of community affairs for the city of Goldsboro. "This is an event that brings everybody together."
The celebration hosted 75 people when it was first founded. This year, attendance grew to 565 ticket holders and many more people on the wait list were also expected to attend.
"If it continues to get larger, we don't have a clue where we'll be," Mrs. Ward said.
The meaning of the day and Tuesday's presidential inauguration were on the minds of many people attending the breakfast.
"We've just seen so many fantastic things happen in this time," said Janice Johnson, director of the event committee. "We all rallied to go out and vote and make a difference. We're here to celebrate all the hard work."
The day has special meaning for Bishop Charles Williams, who later gave the ceremony's benediction.
"We're commemorating the life, the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.," Williams said. "He saw America as being all-inclusive. We can see that now coming to pass."
Williams remembered meeting King in Raleigh at an appearance in 1961.
"I shook his hand," he said.
Keynote speaker and performer Milton Bullock, formerly of the musical group The Platters, told the story of how he joined the Platters and performed some of the music that helped bring together people of all races.
"I'm going to speak about Dr. King's birthday in combination with the historical significance of the day," he said.
The event is sponsored yearly by Wayne County and the city of Goldsboro.
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