Good weather draws a huge crowd for Phoenix MLK march

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX -- It's a special day, not just in the Valley, but across the nation.

“We assemble here at 9 a.m. and then we do the two-mile march to Margaret T. Hance Park,” Valerie Churchwell said. She was was one of many who marched Monday in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his dream of a nation in which people are judged "by the content of their character."

Hundreds gathered in downtown Phoenix hundreds to share and remember a man and his dream.

“It means a lot to me, it means the struggles that we have overcome in the past 400 years, the slavery, all the efforts that Dr.King has done and the 20th century to help advance us as a race and equality obviously,” John Gresham, another marcher, said.

Like King once did, people marched together, weaving through the streets of downtown Phoenix. Many were wearing different shirt colors to represent different teams or organizations. Many people in the crowd mentor the youth and help them understand the struggles and sacrifices King made to gain equality.

“It means a lot, preparing for the world in terms of academics and the bases you need to know for life, in terms of knowing how to progress and continue to dream like Dr. King has laid out for us,” Gresham said.

The annual march came to an end at Margaret T. Hance Park where a celebration of food, games and education continued.

“For us, it's hope and, of course, today is even more special with the inauguration of our president in his second term,” Churchwell said.