DC honors life, legacy of MLK

FOX 5's Bob Barnard reports.

- On this federal holiday, people across the D.C. region came together to celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s life and legacy in many ways and in many places.

The tenth annual Peace Walk was held along the street named for the legendary civil rights leader in Southeast Washington.

"It's frigid, it's cold, it's something that we would prefer not to be in, but we are here because of the cause,” said one participant.

"We have to make sure that what we do has meaning,” said DJ Flava, the organizer of the Peace Walk. “That when we come and gather at events like this, that we actually network with each other and leave going home doing something positive in our neighborhoods.”

A number of organizations took part in the walk, including the 100 Fathers.

"We're the fathers coming back into the lives of our children changing the paradigm of father absence,” said founder Franklin Malone. “We're in schools, we're in the community, we're in the churches. We are working with our young men changing their trajectory towards one of success.”

Last Friday would have been the King's 87th birthday. His legacy and his voice were very much alive here on this day 48 years after his death by an assassin's bullet.

This Peace Walk was just one of many commemorations for Dr. King. A wreath-laying ceremony was held at the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial as families celebrated the life of the man and his crusade.

"It's nice that there is a memorial and that we are celebrating,” said Malawi Welles. “I'm glad that my children know as they come up, they recognize it and they understand. I think they understand the importance of it."

Across the city and throughout the nation, it's a day of service. Volunteers picking up the trash others have left behind along Martin Luther King Jr. Avenue in Southeast D.C.

"It's the small things that count to make big things great, and that's why I'm here – just contributing to my community,” said one volunteer.

"To put it in a nutshell, the struggle continues,” said another.

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