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MLK's legacy extolled at Kleinhans celebration

Mike Desmond/WBFO News

For a large crowd in Kleinhans Music Hall Sunday night, the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. remains strong and needs to be passed on to the new generation. The pounding drums and dancers of the African American Cultural Center are one of the key artistic elements of the annual event, this year with the theme of The Color of Unity: Following the Dream. 

Some speakers remembered King coming to Buffalo, with Emcee Rev. James Lewis III saying he was there and remembered the intensity of the man and his message.

The guest speaker was Rev. Troy Bronner, senior pastor of Elim Christian Fellowship.

"I would suggest that The Color of Unity has something to do with Martin Luther King's understanding of a beloved community and his concept of a loved community is not romanticism, but being socially and morally concerned about all people," said Bronner.

Bronner says King in his time was concerned about poor people at a time when that was not a common concern and it brought him to Memphis to support a garbage workers strike for better wages. That's where he was killed on April 4, 1968.

Mike Desmond is one of Western New York’s most experienced reporters, having spent nearly a half-century covering the region for newspapers, television stations and public radio. He has been with WBFO and its predecessor, WNED-AM, since 1988. As a reporter for WBFO, he has covered literally thousands of stories involving education, science, business, the environment and many other issues. Mike has been a long-time theater reviewer for a variety of publications and was formerly a part-time reporter for The New York Times.