Fresno marches on Martin Luther King Day

FRESNO, Calif.

In Downtown Fresno -- hundreds marched in an event in memory of Dr. King.

With nearly 500 people--this is being called the largest turnout in the 27 year history of Fresno's Martin Luther King Day march. With the Tucson shooting heavy on the minds of many who attended—Dr. King's message is said to be just as important now as ever.

"Oh, oh deep in my heart, I do believe we have overcome today."

We have overcome are new words to an old spiritual. --Howard Jenkins remembers singing "we shall overcome" with his late friend and his pastor, the reverend Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

"I'm from the south," Jenkins said. "I know him .. he was a man, he wasn't no Mickey Mouse. He did great work. God led him to do great work."

King's work and messages of love, non-violence and civil rights-- are still being taught today--Kirk Haynes wants to make sure even his youngest daughter Kennedy understands what king stood for.

"It didn't matter who sat on different sides of the bus. It didn't matter who's skin was a different color," Kennedy Haynes said.

On a day when many are focusing on what unites us--people in the crowd remembered the recent shooting in Tucson, Arizona.

"The six lives that were tragically cut down the 12 that were wounded," Rep. Jim Costa (D) said. "I was with the President last Wednesday night in Tucson because Gabby Giffords is a friend of mine."

Representative Jim Costa says while we have made progress, much still needs to be done.

"One of the main lessons we have not yet learned is Dr. King's emphasis on how hate devastates this society and keeps us from being the America it ought to be," Leslie Kimber said.

And so like the march on Washington in 1963--Fresnans march for a better tomorrow.

"This is one way of saying out loud and specifically what we aspire to for our nation and our children," Patience Milrod said.

"Together it could be better," Jenkins said.

In March the son of Dr. King--Martin Luther King III will visit Buchanan High School here in the valley for an annual scholarship fundraiser. His message--remembering, rejuvenating and reforming.

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