LUFKIN, TX (KTRE) - Lufkin leaders came together Monday to remember Martin Luther King Jr., and other civil rights leaders. The community leaders also wanted to send a message to our region that despite recent race-related incidents around the country, the East Texas community stands for unity.
Lufkin resident Rev. Bettie Kennedy dressed up as Rosa Parks Monday for the Lufkin Hope Center's Martin Luther King Jr. program. The 83-year-old woman lived through the civil rights movement.
"I am the granddaughter of a slave,” said Rev. Kennedy. “I know what it feels like to be segregated."
Kennedy took on the role so she could educate the younger generation on this important chapter of U.S. history. She says that people like Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks did a lot for freedom but our nation is far from free today.
Pastor John Fulbright was young when the civil rights movement took place but remembers some aspects of the time.
"People bleed and died for freedom,” said Fulbright. “I remember when we integrated into the school system. I was too young to understand it then but old enough to appreciate it now.”
He adds that racism is still a problem in our country today. He says incidents like Ferguson showcase how our nation is still battling racism.
That why pastor Clifford Olford decided to host Monday's program to help alleviate the social tension in our community.
“As community leaders it's our job is to diffuse the situation and not add fuel to the fire,” said Oldford
Fulbright says despite the negative events that happened in Ferguson something good things has come out of it.
"People have come together. People of all races have combined forces.” Fulbright said.
Both pastors say for our nation to be free from prejudices everyone needs to come together.