Diane Walker’s tour of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial brought tears to her eyes. The grandmother from Fairfax, Va., spoke of her struggle living through the times when King was at his pinnacle. She lived through the modern civil rights movement. She personally heard King speak some of the words now emblazoned in his memorial.

She expressed her struggle fighting for integration and being excited to have the opportunity to attend Ohio State University after winning that battle. Walker does not want all the hard work of King and others to be wasted. She believes people now take for granted rights like equal access to public accommodations and hopes this monument may keep these memories fresh in their minds. “I am fearful that the younger generation doesn’t grasp the true meaning of King’s message,” Walker said. “I am hoping that this monument may help them understand fully.”

Walker spoke of her deep connection to the monument and expressed that she was grateful that the monument was created for people who were unable to experience King’s presence when he was alive. “I know the struggle and I have experienced much of what he did,” Walker said.


Antonya Bruno

Special to the AFRO