When certain world events happen, we remember exactly where we were when the information crashed in on us. For me, the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr., was one of those events. Rev. King was murdered on April 4, 1968, at about 7:00 p.m. EST. I didn’t learn of his death until the next day. Looking back, I see an almost seven-year-old Tammy sitting in her first-grade class at Butler Elementary School in the Cloverdale neighborhood in West Savannah. I can see the teacher trying to explain to the class who this great man was, and what happened to him.
I remember someone rolling in a big TV on a tall stand so that we could watch the news. I did not fully understand the teacher’s explanations and felt sad, confused, and afraid. These were big concepts for a six-year-old to grasp, especially when everyone else in the country and world was also trying to make sense of this tragedy.
As I grew up, I learned that Martin Luther King, Jr., was a civil rights legend who advocated for peaceful approaches to some of society’s biggest problems. His work continues to have a profound effect on my life, and the world consciousness. I sincerely believe his words “the arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice.”