TECHARCANA, Arkansas. The seventh annual MLK Day Parade in Texarkana kicked off Monday morning in honor of the beloved Martin Luther King. It was organized and sponsored by Bridging the Gaps of Arkansas with 40 participants in the parade and food trucks.
Bridging the Gaps of Arkansas CEO Johnny Riley was available for comment, as was his uncle.
Riley said Bridging the Gaps of Arkansas has sponsored the parade in previous years and continues to grow.
Also in Texarkana to celebrate MLK Day was Riley’s uncle, Dr. Ernest Davis, an army chaplain in Vietnam when Dr. King was assassinated in 1968.
Davis went on to say, “Dr. King really inspired me to go to school and get my doctorate in biblical history.”
Davis is an alumnus of Oral Roberts University and UCLA and said, “I believe cultivation and education are the key to overcoming misunderstandings of misinformation so we can grow together in love. And we can live together as brothers of Christ. The world is in big trouble if we don’t learn to live together in love.”
“This day is for us, but it took a little longer for the country to understand what Dr. King meant to our world. And America lost a great man when he was killed,” Davis said. “Now we live in a complex world, but then the times were more complex, there was less understanding of human rights, because then there were Jim Crow laws, and there was a war in Vietnam, and the world was in turmoil.”
Finally, when asked how we should address him, Davis proudly replied, “I am a theologian, an American citizen, and a Vietnam War veteran.”
But what is most surprising, Davis not only knew Martin Luther King, but was also inspired by him.