Martin Luther King Jr.’s life celebrated at the Marshall White Center

Jan 22 2013 - 9:16am

Images

KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner 
(From left) David Smauldon, the Rev. Carey McCall III, Betty Smauldon, Thomas White and JD Marett talk Monday during an event celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday at the Marshall White Center in Ogden.
KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner 
Robert L. Stephens plays the piano during a Louisana-inspired breakfast of ham, link sausage, grits, scrambled eggs, and biscuits and gravy.
KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner 
Sisters Lillie Reynolds (left) and Schqueta Morning participate in a march in Ogden to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday.
A group of youth lead the crowd in the pledge of alligence during a celebration of Martin Luther King day at the Marshal White Center in Ogden on January 21, 2013  (KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner)
Rev. Carey McCall III speaks during a celebration of Martin Luther King day at the Marshal White Center in Ogden on January 21, 2013  (KERA WILLIAMS/ Standard-Examiner)
People listen to Ron Dieter speak at the ampitheater in Ogden after participating in a march down Lincoln Ave. in Ogden to celebrate Martin Luther King day on January 21, 2013  (KERA WILLIAMS/ Standard-Examiner)
KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner 
(From left) David Smauldon, the Rev. Carey McCall III, Betty Smauldon, Thomas White and JD Marett talk Monday during an event celebrating Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday at the Marshall White Center in Ogden.
KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner 
Robert L. Stephens plays the piano during a Louisana-inspired breakfast of ham, link sausage, grits, scrambled eggs, and biscuits and gravy.
KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner 
Sisters Lillie Reynolds (left) and Schqueta Morning participate in a march in Ogden to celebrate Martin Luther King Jr. Day on Monday.
A group of youth lead the crowd in the pledge of alligence during a celebration of Martin Luther King day at the Marshal White Center in Ogden on January 21, 2013  (KERA WILLIAMS/Standard-Examiner)
Rev. Carey McCall III speaks during a celebration of Martin Luther King day at the Marshal White Center in Ogden on January 21, 2013  (KERA WILLIAMS/ Standard-Examiner)
People listen to Ron Dieter speak at the ampitheater in Ogden after participating in a march down Lincoln Ave. in Ogden to celebrate Martin Luther King day on January 21, 2013  (KERA WILLIAMS/ Standard-Examiner)

OGDEN -- Although id-t has been decades since the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. led civil rights marches, the fight for inequality must not stop.

That was the message organizers of the annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day breakfast shared Monday at the Marshall White Center.

NAACP President Joseph Nicholas said people must not forget that racism still exists today, but it is up to the community to fight it together.

The Martin Luther King Jr. Day breakfast was a way for the community to come together, get to know each other and celebrate King's life.

"This is a combined effort of a lot of people," Nicholas said. "It's a community service, and the community looks forward to this every year."

People from all walks of life are invited to attend the event and provide a free meal for the less fortunate.

And people from all areas of the community had to join together in order for it to be successful.

As Nicholas pointed out, the event was sponsored by Weber State University, hosted by the NAACP and held at the Marshall White Center. The United Way gave out books for those who promised to read them to a child.

That is an example of how the event is meant for everyone, said the Rev. Charles Petty, an NAACP member.

"The dream is all-inclusive," Petty said. "It includes different groups, because it is a dream for our nation. It's not just for black folks."

While NAACP member Robert L. Stephens provided musical accompaniment on the piano, attendees ate a Louisiana-inspired breakfast of ham, link sausage, biscuits and gravy, grits and scrambled eggs mixed with a Southern-style blend of spices.

Longtime Ogden restaurateur Thomas Jackson and his friends got up around 4 a.m. to prepare the meal.

"I always make the biscuits and gravy and grits because this is what we ate when we came in the back door, because they wouldn't let us in the front," Jackson said. "If they saw us eating a steak, they would kill us -- well, maybe not kill us, but at least beat us."

The breakfast allows people from all walks of life to share the same meal.

"King didn't do this for all of the blacks," Jackson said, "he did this for everybody."

Serving up the food was a line of purple. Volunteering their time were students from Weber State University, including members of the student government executive officers, the diversity board, the women's rugby team and LGBT resources.

Ogden resident Amber Yardley came with her family to the event as a way to introduce her two young children to King's effect on history.

"We came last year, and we really enjoyed it," Yardley said. "The speakers are great, and it's great to teach our kids about Martin Luther King and what he did for us."

As the different groups of people gathered together for the meal, guest speaker the Rev. Carey E. McCall III, from New Zion Baptist Church, reminded the crowd that the struggle for equality has not ended.

"The journey continues," McCall said, sharing the theme of this year's event.

Many of the youths only know King through a few recordings or recitations they hear once a year, McCall said.

McCall called for everyone to protest abuse of the elderly, segregation and unfair practices, while helping the marginalized and being their brother's keeper.

To do so, he said, the community needs to come together following King's example of nonviolent protest.

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