Hundreds march in Abilene to remember Martin Luther King Jr.
ABILENE, Texas - Hundreds of people participated in a march to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Monday afternoon. Organizers told KTXS the turnout was the largest they've seen in years.
Monday marks Martin Luther King Jr. Day, though King was born on Jan. 15. President Ronald Reagan signed the holiday into law in 1983.
The march began at the Woodson Center for Excellence as community leaders gave speeches promoting a theme of unity. A row of people carried a sign that marked the years King lived, and the crowd followed behind.
"He stood up for us, you know, not just for African Americans, but for everyone," said Taylor Mack, a student at McMurry University.
Many religious organizations participated and sang gospels, singing, "We shall overcome" as they crossed the bridge section of Highway 80 named after Martin Luther King Jr. The bridge is also known as the "Singing Bridge," named in 1992 for the grooves in the pavement that create a humming sound.
The MLK march has become a staple in Abilene since the early 1990s.
The Abilene Black Chamber of Commerce also kept with its annual tradition of hosting a dinner to honor MLK Monday at the Abilene Convention Center.