President Ronald Reagan signed a bill into effect on November 20th, 1983 to make Dr. Martin Luther King's birthday a national holiday.

The national holiday went into effect in January 1986, but it wasn't until the year 2000 when all 50 states honored the birthday of the slain 1960s civil rights leader.

Nationwide, there will thousands of peace marches and celebrations, including a local celebration right here in Killeen.

The "March For Justice" in honor of those who have lost their lives to police, such as Breonna Taylor and George Floyd, starts at Killeen City Hall on King Day, Monday, January 18th. It's being organized by the Killeen Chapter of Buffalo Soldiers MC, and they're asking that anyone who would like to participate be at City Hall by 8:30 AM.

If you want more information call Warren Close at (240) 457-0360.

The day is also a call for people across the nation to give of themselves in service to their community. AmeriCorps describes MLK Day as " a day on, not a day off", and each year thousands of Americans volunteer to honor the legacy of Dr. King and bring out the best in their neighborhoods.

If you're looking to get involved, AmeriCorps has a link to help you find volunteer opportunities. You can also register your volunteer project so people can find it.

In the video below, King's daughter, Bernice A. King, says, "Nothing's insignificant as you're celebrating the King Day. Remember: You're important, you're significant, and you have something to that you can offer to make humanity a better place."

King says her father would love that there's been a day set aside to remind people of their ability to contribute and to bring out the best in others.

 

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