Congress Members Lead Civil Rights Congressional Pilgrimage Wreath Laying
Several members of Congress were in Montgomery for the 2018 Congressional Civil Rights Pilgrimage.
“What happened here in Montgomery and what happened in Birmingham in Selma and so many other places in the south encouraged people to stand up, speak up, and speak out,” says Rep. John Lewis.
Members of congress took part in a wreath laying to remember people killed by Civil Rights era violence. Some of those at the ceremony were witnesses.
“We were tear gassed, we were left bloodied but we finally made it to Montgomery and the voting rights acts was passed,” says Lewis.
“I think that this kind of pilgrimage helps us to remember and reflect and now it’s time to recommit and rededicate ourselves to the ideals of this pilgrimage,” says Rep. Terri Sewell.
This year’s pilgrimage comes 50 years after the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. The mother of a young woman who was killed during a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia was at the wreath laying. Cynthia Sullivan says her daughter heather will be be remembered like the martyrs of the 1960’s.
“Heather is also part of the Civil Rights movement and no way has the movement died and we need to recognize that we need to acknowledge that and we need to continue,” says Cynthia Sullivan.
People taking part in the 3-day pilgrimage say they have been inspired as they toured the historic sites of the Civil Rights movement.
“The people in Montgomery, Selma, and Birmingham used everything they had to change not just this state but helped change America,” says Lewis.
Following Saturday’s wreath laying, the pilgrimage continued in Selma.