Commemorating a Civil Rights Hero: MLK Jr.


Courtesy of Mizzou Pi Phi

The Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial is found in Washington D.C. to commemorate the civil rights activist.

Lilly Skaggs, Senior Staff Writer

Martin Luther King Jr. may be one of the most prominent people in civil rights history to this day. His legacy of his fight for equality and justice will live on in history forever. In fact, an entire day is dedicated to him. The campaign for a federal holiday in King’s honor began soon after his assassination in 1968. President Ronald Reagan signed the holiday into law in 1983, for the third Monday of every January. On Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the entire nation, including schools, banks, the stock market, etc. all pause in honor of this civil rights hero. MLK Jr. Day was designed to honor the activist and minister whose accomplishments have continued to inspire generations of Americans. 

As the St. Joe community paused, along with the rest of the nation on this holiday, two members of the St. Joe community reflected on how Martin Luther King Jr. continues to inspire them. 

Mrs. Veronica Washington, the business department chair and diversity coordinator at St. Joe, shared her thoughts on this civil rights hero.

 “I think he led the charge and persevered through very courageous work even though he faced so much adversity, hate, and eventually death. What was inspiring was that he did give up but continued to shed light on the sinfulness of segregation and racism even though his message wasn’t popular,” Mrs. Washington said. 

Junior Gretchen Helmsing also shared the impact MLK has had on her life. 

“Martin Luther King is a huge role model in my life because of the lasting impact he has had on society in his fight for equality. He inspires both myself and the people around me to stand up for those who are oppressed and may not have their voices heard,” Gretchen explained. 

As both Gretchen and Mrs. Washington stated, MLK is a wonderful person to look up to. His perseverance in the fight for what is right serves as a perfect example for the entirety of the St. Joe community to stand up for personal beliefs, despite the cost.