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The 2018 theme: “Together we win with love for humanity.”
The Valdosta/Lowndes County MLK Jr. Saturday, Jan. 6, James H. Rainwater Conference Center, off Norman Drive. Speaker: Dr. Kendrick Gardner. The banquet’s 660 seats are sold out, said Joseph “Sonny” Vickers, a Valdosta city councilman and chairperson of the Valdosta Lowndes County Martin Luther King Jr. Commemorative Committee. 14, a commemoration program will be held at St. Church, 419 S. Ashley St. Speaker: The Rev. Jeremy G. Rich, pastor, First Missionary Baptist Church, Thomasville. 15, the youth program will be held at Mathis City Auditorium, 2300 N. Ashley St. Speaker: DeWayne Johnson, co owner of BridgeBuilder Education Investments. Lunch will be served immediately following the program in the multi purpose room.
Born Jan. 15, 1929, Martin Luther King Jr. rose to prominence during the civil rights era. Using Mahatma Gandhi’s non violent methods of civil disobedience, King led demonstrations to protest inequality in the lives of black citizens in the South and throughout the United States.
As a young preacher, King’s work truly began in the mid 1950s when Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat to a white person on a Montgomery bus. King became a leader of the 385 day Montgomery Bus Boycott.
The boycott set a pattern for his civil rights work: He gained great prominence but with terrible consequences. As he rose to national recognition during the bus boycott, he also suffered the bombing of his house.
He would become honored and jailed. King received the Nobel Peace Prize but he endured the violence of Selma. He preached “I have a dream,” while people attempted to silence him. He would practice love but be the focus of hate.
He lived for the Declaration of Independence’s American promise that all men are created equal. On April 4, 1968, he died for that ideal, killed by an assassin’s bullet on a hotel balcony in Memphis, Tenn.