by Tashun Chism
John Eubanks met Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. 40 years ago, but he remembers it just like it happened yesterday.
"Back in 1968 in Dallas, he spoke at a church convention. I shook his hand and it was a surprise to me because I didn't know he was that short," said Eubanks.
Eubanks was just one of many East Texans who participated in today's 16th Annual Martin Luther King Day March in Lufkin. People from all walks of life showed up to honor Dr. King's legacy, and neither the cold January winds nor physical ailments could stop them.
Marcher Justina Bogany told us, "I needed my pill because I'm aching. I was even hurting Saturday night but I was determined to do this march. He died so we could have our rights and i think i can do this march for him, in his remembrance."
For East Texans like Eubanks who lived through it, the Jim Crow era doesn't seem like so long ago.
"I remember the time that you wanted some ice cream and you could go in, but you couldn't sit at the counter," Eubanks said.
But today's marchers all agree that Dr. King's legacy has helped young people just as much as it has helped those who actually lived through the injustices he fought against.
Linda Pendland, one of the march's organizers, said "While we knew what it was to be bound, they can be free. And they have to know that the bridge that brought them over, and that was Martin Luther King."