National News

Raleigh residents travel to see King monument dedicated

Posted October 14, 2011 10:11 p.m. EDT
Updated October 15, 2011 7:15 p.m. EDT

— Months after its completion, the monument to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. will be dedicated Sunday in Washington, D.C. The ceremony, originally planned for Aug. 28, was delayed as the wind and rain of Hurricane Irene swept up the East Coast. It was rescheduled to coincide with the 16th anniversary of the Million Man March. 

The 30-foot statue of the civil rights leader was carved out of the center of a single boulder. The outer pieces of that stone form the entry to the newest national monument. On either side, granite walls bear King's words. It is the first monument on the National Mall to honor a black leader. 

Raleigh resident Todd Barr visited the monument Friday with his family.

"It's really an amazing symbol, and it's a stunning feeling when you're here," Barr said.

The group traveling from Raleigh for Sunday's event will celebrate King's message of justice, democracy, hope and love.

"It's (about) equality. It affects every part of our society. It's inseparable to my generation, your generation," D.C. resident Justin Tinsey said.

Jeremiah Nicholson, also of Washington, D.C., said the memorial, which sits on the Tidal Basin adjacent to the Roosevelt Memorial, "almost looks magical."

Pennsylvania resident Rocky Twyman said there's no better place for King's powerful message than in the nation's capital.

"His dream is not being fulfilled because of all this partisanship in Congress right now," Twyman said. "We really want that to cease."

President Barack Obama, the first black U.S. president, will deliver the keynote address at the dedication.