The annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day march and celebration in Long Beach on Monday will commemorate Nelson Mandela, the late South African president, along with King’s legacy.
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Marchers will take the traditional route through the city, starting at 11:30 a.m. at Laurelton Boulevard and West Park Avenue, continued east on West Park and ending at the Martin Luther King Center, 615 Riverside Blvd. The parade’s grand marshal is Chandler McMillan, the valedictorian of Long Beach High School’s class of 2014.
After the parade, at about 12 p.m., the center will hold a holiday celebration for King, including a luncheon and fundraiser with performers and speakers. The keynote speaker is Loretta Lynch, U.S. attorney for the Eastern District of New York, according to the Long Beach Herald.
MLK Board Chair James Hodge said of McMillan and Lynch:
“We’re very proud of the fact that they can be examples to so many other young African-Americans to know that you can make it and you can rise to the top. We’re looking to encourage other young people to know they can achieve. It all coincides together, letting people know that King and Mandela fought to have these opportunities, and we need to take advantage of them. They didn’t do what they did in vain.”