Friday, January 31, 2014
If only Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. could see his vision become a reality, as the nation celebrated his birthday Monday January 20, 2014.
Dr. King was born January 15, 1929 and cited his famous “I have a dream speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. on August 28, 1963.
“A dream comes true because Dr. King was the fore-runner of what we enjoy today as Americans, and for me to live to see a black president has been another dream come true”, said 90-year-old Sarah T. Hudson, a retired educator of Georgetown, S.C.
Ms. Hudson and hundreds joined in the celebration of the annual Martin Luther King Jr. breakfast hosted by the Georgetown County Boys’ Mentor Group in the Glisson Room at Bethel AME Church in Georgetown.
Dr. Randy Dozier, Judge Jan Holmes of family court, Ron Charlton and Lillie Jean Johnson of Georgetown County Council, Sandra Johnson of the School Board, former School District chairman Charlesann Buttone, retired deputy superintendent Jonathan Moultrie, City Council member Peggy Wayne, Rep. Carl Anderson, and Jeff Malinski, general manager of the Georgetown Hospital System-Sodexo were some of the elected officials and dignitaries who attended the celebration.
Since the death of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. some 46 years ago there is togetherness among the various races at celebrations across the nation.
“Dr. Martin Luther King’s dream has allowed us to express freedom; we are able to get along as a people, and living as one in the community.”
“It’s time to get along and more people are realizing the importance of this day”, added Jeff Malinski.
His staff at the Georgetown Hospital (Sodexo) donated the food for the breakfast.
“I did not know the impact of today.”
“I will see what I can do to continue to be a part of this celebration,” said Malinski.
Breakfast was served by the Georgetown Delta Sigma Theta.
President Marthena Morant and chairperson Vervatine Reid said their organization was there to support the national initiative program EMBODI that stands for Empowering Black Males Opportunity for Independence, offering their services to the Boys Mentor Group.
The organization that had a vision to help young African American males began 20 years ago at the old Choppee High School.
William Greene, Charles Freeman, Darren Vanderhorst, Robert Horry, and Tyrone Greene believed that there was a need to guide young African American men by way of mentoring, to become productive citizens and future leaders of the community.
Randy Ford was the driving force that created the Boys Mentor Group.
“I saw a need for young men to mentor.”
“I wanted to empower the young men to become productive citizens and to create a career for themselves.”
“I wanted to offer our young men an opportunity to be exposed to culture, activities, and to learn about life.”
“It’s a big world out there”, added Ford.
The Boys Mentor Group began twelve years ago.
As the guests ate their breakfast 15-year-old boys mentor Kewaun Myers played musical selections on his keyboard.
In every aspect of the program each mentoring boy participated.
Naquez Pringle led the group in the pledge of allegiance, Dwayne Britton was the presider, Joekwon Linnen did the welcome, and De-Montae Wright read a poem he wrote about Dr. King.
The speaker of the hour was J.Michael Salley.
Michael Salley is the owner/president, CEO of Salley Wealth Advisors Group, LLC,Summerville S.C.
He attended Queens College/CUNY in Flushing, New York graduating with a B.A. degree in American History/Political Science.
He began his career on Wall Street in 1979 at Merrill Lynch, where he was trained as a financial advisor.
He instructed the Mentoring Boys on how success begins.
Success starts at home.
Honor and have respect for your parents.
He also gave the recipe for success — planning, passion, persistence and patience.
“Dr. King was filled from head to toe with persistence,” added Salley.
At the conclusion of the program presentations were acknowledged.
Rep. Carl Anderson presented the Mentor Boys with a check for $1,000 to help them with their upcoming trip to Washington, D.C.
Jonathan Moultrie was given an award for his involvement in the community and how he has over the years impacted the lives of so many young people.
Jeff Malinski of the Georgetown Hospital (Sodexo) was also presented an award.
A cake was lit with a candle honoring the 20-year anniversary of the group that got together at the old Choppee High School some twenty years ago; that wanted to make a difference in the lives of young African American men, and in the future young women.
The program ended with the traditional Negro spiritual “We shall overcome.”