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Black Citizens and Friends of Grand Junction Annual MLK march

Published: Jan. 17, 2022 at 7:09 PM MST
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GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KKCO) - “Today’s event is all about Martin Luther King Jr. It’s about us celebrating his birthday, celebrating the birthday of a great man. Who did and tried to do more great things,” said Eric Ward with Black Citizens and Friends.

Ward states this event is about showing love across the Grand Valley, “In the Grand Valley, we look at this, and we say hey, let’s show love to our fellow man. Let’s not show negative feelings to our fellow man.”

This year’s theme was “What have you done for others?” David Combs, president of the non-profit, says the public usually thinks of MLK as a day of celebration, as a day of... “And what we want you all to do is to go out and share. Make it a day on. Make it a day where you got out and do something.”

The non-profit typically hosts a six-day celebration for Martin Luther King Jr. This year, it was decided only to hold the commemorative events, including the proclamations and march.

“Out of respect, we said that we didn’t want to hold what we call, and what the King family called, celebratory events. We wanted to hold commemorative events,” stated Ward.

The King family called for “no celebration” of MLK Day without action on voting rights legislation, including the John Lewis Voting Rights Act and Freedom to Vote Act.

“It was a disappointment not to have the other events, but we wanted to do this in commemoration of Dr. King,” said Ward.

Ward says he wants the message of love to resonate with the community, “It’s not for us to bring each other down. It’s for us to come together as one. To show respect for all people, to show admiration. To say let’s do this together and then together we can do great things.”

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