MONTEVALLO, Ala. (WIAT) – The City of Montevallo held its annual Martin Luther King, Jr. Unity March and Program Monday.
Members of the community marched along Main Street to Montevallo High School where a program featuring community leaders and city officials was held.
While addressing the crowd Master of Ceremonies, Rev. Kenneth Dukes, reflected on how much the program has grown since it first began. “I remember when it was only about 10 people,” he said.
Today, at least 100 people gathered to celebrate.
Montevallo Mayor Hollie Cost says the MLK march is a source of pride for the city.
“I’m of the opinion that all communities should celebrate this great man and what he did for the country as a whole. I’m particularly committed to ensuring that our children understand the impact of his actions,” said Cost.
The mayor spoke of her late uncle, Will Campbell, who she describes as a staunch civil rights activist who marched with Dr. King. Cost says her uncle was one of four people to escort African American students to integrate the Little Rock Public School System and was present during the founding of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference by Dr. King.
Montevallo City Councilman Don Hughes says he had the honor of meeting Dr. King and shaking his hand and listen to him speak in 1964.
“It was a great opportunity that I had that probably hardly anybody in Montevallo had had,” said Hughes. “People look up to him as a leader but his vision was every day, to look up at the community and helping others. That was his total goal and that’s what we do in Montevallo,” he adds.
Hughes says local fraternities and sororities play a big role in reaching out to the community and helping students, like the Mu Mu Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Ins.
Graduate chapter members from Omega Psi Phi, Delta Sigma Theta and Kappa Alpha Psi also participated in the program.
Members of the Psi Xi Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. used this year’s program as an opportunity to offer a lesson on financial literacy for the community.