Fred Gray, the civil rights attorney who represented both Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Rosa Parks in court, visited Northern Kentucky University Jan. 23 to help commemorate the life of King.
Gray made significant contributions to the civil rights movement, including organizing the Montgomery Bus boycott, the 1965 Selma to Montgomery March and the Tuskegee Experiment Study.
His appearance at the podium was met with thunderous applause. He joked of his many invitations to speak around the country, “I don’t know why, I guess it’s maybe because most of the persons who were really involved in the movement have kind of passed on, and there are not too many left.” It was his stirring stories, however, of the life he embarked upon and his determination to “become a lawyer, return to Alabama and destroy everything segregated I could find,” that resonated with the crowd.
The commemoration kicked off with a march from Norse Commons to the Otto M. Budig theater. Cynthia Pinchback-Hines, Associate Dean of African American Student Affairs and Ethnic Services, said the march was “symbolic of the many marches that took place during the civil rights movement.”
As marchers gathered in Norse Commons, freshman pre-med major Amber Evans passed around a poster on which students could “write what you feel.” Evans said that the march seemed like a “really honorable and recognizable thing to do for (MLK) because he was such a good person.”
Greg Moore, Polmarch of Kappa Alpha Psi, saw the march as a way “to build unity on campus.” This was his second march, and while he admitted the march was a success he “wished there could have been more