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Guamanians honor Dr. King's lessons

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by Michele Catahay

Guam - To celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the legacy he left behind, the community hosted a couple of events in his honor. Dr. King throughout his lifetime promoted equality, social justice and opportunity for all. As such, Governor Eddie Calvo and Lieutenant Governor Ray Tenorio declared 2011 as the "Year of Guamanian Service". 

The day of service began with a march from the Paseo Loop, followed by a wave at the Nieves Flores Memorial Library intersection. The governor's Serve Guam Commission, in conjunction with the Corporation for National and Community Service along with Americorp's programs continued the celebration at the Agana Shopping Center. 

Program manager from the Serve Guam Commission Doris Aguon says it's important for the island to give back, telling KUAM News, "I feel that I was very important and I'm very glad especially today that he actually took the time out and walked down the streets and took part in the MLK march today. And that there is a call. The governor and lieutenant governor continue to make the call for volunteerism and service."

A presentation of the governor's proclamation was held along with a resolution presentation given by several members of the 31st Guam Legislature.

In the meantime, Americorp member from Pa'a Taotao Tano Ashley Mitchell says everyone should embrace Dr. King's legacy, saying, "I think it's a good holiday to celebrate. He's someone we should all remember. After all, he died for his cause. He got his message through to the world and it's something to celebrate, right?"

And fellow Americorp member Jamielyn Mantanona says giving back to the community through service brings together everyone of all nationalities. "We need to spread peace and love," she explained.

Elsewhere, at the Micronesia Mall in Dededo, members of the Association for Childhood Education International held a Michael Jackson dance and look-a-like contest for all ages. According to president Heidi Cameron, Jackson and Dr. King are a lot alike because they both fought for equal rights

She said, "Michael Jackson during his time, he really promoted black and white tolerance, which is continuing the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr., what he started. It's important that as we come here and gather as a community to remember Michael Jackson, it'll help us get together and remember the legacy that he left behind and also to remember that even in our day and time, we will also remember the legacy of Martin Luther King."

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