Southern Tier celebrates Martin Luther King Day

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BINGHAMTON (WBNG) – Several events were held across the Southern Tier Monday to honor Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. while volunteers also used the day to give back to others.

For Broome-Tioga NAACP president Micah Barreiro, Martin Luther King Day is a time to remember those struggled while fighting for civil rights.

“There were a lot of sacrifices made. There were a lot of indignities we survived. and for my generation it is about not forgetting the blood that was shed to get us to the place where we are,” said Barreiro.

The Broome and Tioga NAACP held an annual Martin Luther King Day celebration Monday at Binghamton City Hall that featured a speech from Binghamton Mayor Rich David, live music and dance performances.

People of all ages came to celebrate the morals and values that Dr. King dedicated his life to protecting.

“Although we go through things now. They did not have a lot of the rights we have now and that’s because of the struggle they went through,” said Barreiro.

The NAACP stressed the importance of today’s black youth knowing their history.

“On this day, it’s important to bring young people in so that they understand what has been said, so they understand where we are coming from, but then also to give them hope,” said Barreiro.

Local volunteers used King’s message of community to give back to others.

Broome County’s United Way gathered volunteers to help organizations such as Tech Works in Binghamton.

“We have about two dozen students from Binghamton University, helping us out. Clearing the sidewalks no matter how cold it was. Moving stuff around, working on graphics. Doing a wide variety of tasks to make Tech Works alive,” said the executive director of Tech Works, Susan Sherwood.

Reverend King may have never march in the streets of Binghamton, but his legacy will be felt for generations to come.

“Dr. Martin Luther King, he gave us a start. But now it’s up to us,” said Barreiro.

Several volunteer activities for the Broome County United Way’s ‘Day of Service’ were cancelled due to the winter weather, while others were postponed.

Volunteers will now help teach seniors at the Senior Center of Western Broome about today’s most common technologies on February 11.

Tyler Brown

Tyler Brown

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