Gallery: March of remembrance for Martin Luther King, Jr.

Huntington residents show support for his fight for civil rights

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More stories from By Caitlin Fowlkes


The Huntington community came together on Martin Luther King Jr. Day to march from the 16th Street Baptist Church to the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center 4:30 p.m.

Preceding the march was a history of events leading up to the need for civil rights speech given by Sylvia Ridgeway, president of the West Virginia Conference of Branches and Huntington – Cabell Branch of the NAACP.

“You can be the catalyst for continued change that is needed in the world today,” Ridgeway said during her speech.

Rabbi Jean Eglinton of the B’nai Shalom Jewish Synagogue carried a Torah in the march.

A group of children from the A.D. Lewis Community Center waved signs led by one of the community center’s workers, Jasmine Felder.

I used to attend the center as a child and march every year”

— Jasmine Felder, worker at A.D. Lewis Community Center

“I used to attend the center as a child and march every year,” Felder said. “Now I work at the center and bring the children to march. It is a very inspirational time; it’s a symbol of hope.”

Maurice Cooley, associate vice president of the office of intercultural affairs, said he hopes people continue to celebrate the freedom they have.

“I hope that most of us in modern day society have come to appreciate and understand the importance of solidarity and how to embrace the lives of others irrelevant of the color of their skin, lifestyle, race or religion,” Cooley said. “We must continue to celebrate the freedom that we now have.”

Huntington Mayor Stephen Williams, was also found amongst the people marching the streets of Huntington and singing hymns.

The assembly was given a police escort and was followed by a trolley for those who could not walk the length of the march.

People stood on porches and clapped for the marchers as they passed by.

The march was followed by a series of speeches, performances, prayers and gospels at the Joan C. Edwards Performing Arts Center 5:30 p.m.

Caitlin Fowlkes can be contacted at [email protected]