Today marks the 50th Anniversary of one of the largest civil rights rallies in United States history. Standing in front of the Lincoln Memorial, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech during the March on Washington. The march was organized by a group of civil rights, labor, and religious leaders under the theme "jobs and freedom."
Over 200,000 people joined Dr. King at the Lincoln Memorial 50 years ago, including our own George Hocker Jr. George grew up in segregated Washington D.C.He knew that the march would be something big, but had no idea the effect it would take on the entire country.
This morning, OPB radio featured George. He shared his remembrances of this landmark event, and explains to listeners that although there were hundreds of thousands of people present, “you could’ve heard a pin drop out there, almost,” George said. “It was that quiet.” The words of Dr. King were so powerful you felt like he was speaking directly to you. “This was a defining moment for me, because I walked away from there feeling I’m not alone,” George went on to say.
Last Saturday, Nick and George joined other local community leaders to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the March on Washington. As we reflect over the last 50 years we have made steady progress, but we also recognize that our work is far from finished. Today too many people in this great and prosperous country suffer from the same inequalities present 50 years ago.
Washington-Born Portland Man Remembers 1963 March
Geoff Nocross on OPB.org
Everyday Heroes: King speech just the beginning for George E. Hocker Jr.
Brian Wood on KATU.com