STEUBENVILLE - Escorted by police cruisers and fire trucks, approximately 70 people marched Monday from the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Center to Steubenville High School where they remembered the late civil rights leader who was known for his nonviolence and dedication for equality in the United States.
The cloudy, cold day had no effect on the marchers who were lead by the Steubenville High School drum line for the 25-minute walk along Market Street and Fourth Street.
The march and program in the high school auditorium brought a close to three days of celebration to honor King and to educate the youth of the community about King and his fight to end racial discrimination.
MARCHING TO REMEMBER — Approximately 70 people, led by youth members of the U.N.I.T.E.D. F.R.O.N.T. along with the Rev. Nathan Malavolti, T.O.R., of Franciscan University of Steubenville; Michael Thomas of the U.N.I.T.E.D. F.R.O.N.T.; and Laura Meeks and James Baber of Eastern Gateway Community College marched through downtown Steubenville Monday morning to remember the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr. - Dave Gossett
"If you have a chance you should go to the public library and check out a recording of one of his speeches. You will hear that remarkable voice and it will take you back to a different place and you can hear the passion in his voice during these times," Steubenville 4th Ward Councilwoman Angela Suggs said.
The marchers this year included a delegation from the Upper Ohio Labor Council.
"A spokesman for the group said they understood, "how important Martin Luther King was to the labor movement. That is why we are here today."
And, Steubenville Mayor Domenick Mucci related how he worked eight months to reach a consensus to name the High Shaft Recreation Center after the late civil right activist.
"We had our own struggle to rename this center. It took eight months when it should have been done in two weeks," said Mucci.
The audience at the high school heard from Brother John Paul McMahon, T.O.R., who said he happened to be on the Mall in Washington, D.C., in 1963 when King delivered his "I Have a Dream" speech.
"I was a young arrival at our monastery in Washington and my mother came to visit me. It was a beautiful summer day so we took a walk to the Mall and I had no idea I would be a witness to history," said McMahon.
The Martin Luther King Association recognized Mary K. McVey and Tiffany Boury of the Franciscan University of Steubenville education department for providing volunteer students from the university to help mentor and guide young students at the MLK Center in the city's after-school program.
The association also recognized several Steubenville City School District students who participated in the annual essay contest.
First-place awards went to Ciara Smith, Makenzie Palma, Donald Springer, Hannah Hoover and Kyle Lewis. Second-place awards included Jesse Fyock and Lindsay Busby, and Gianna Scugoza won an honorable mention award.
The hour-long ceremony concluded with remarks from Phil McCargo, president of the Eastern Gateway Community College Cultural Diversity Club, who said King "didn't just stand for black people. He stood for equality for all."
"Looking at the poster on the screen behind me I start to get teared up as we remember this great man," added McCargo.