MLK Day: Thank You Coretta!

“My story is a freedom song of struggle. It is about finding one's purpose, how to overcome fear and to stand up for causes bigger than one's self.

- Coretta Scott King

Today is the day we celebrate a man who fought for equality for African Americans. That man is known as Martin Luther King, Jr. But, it is only right that we recognize the woman that made this day possible-- Coretta Scott King.

Coretta and Martin married in 1953, had four children and moved to Montgomery, Alabama. Coretta spent much of her time raising her children, and like her husband, she spoke on civil rights at organization, churches, and colleges.

Two months after MLK’s assassination in 1968, Coretta formed The Martin Luther King Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change. The historic park shows King’s birthplace and has over a million visitors a year. After fighting for two decades, Coretta celebrated the first ever national Martin Luther King, Jr. day on January 20, 1986. In an essay written for the King Center, she wrote, “This holiday honors the courage of a man who endured harassment, threats and beatings, and even bombings.”

She continued to make history by delivering the Class Day address at Howard University and preaching at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London. She also fought for women’s rights and LGBTQ rights.  Her list of important feats also included her letter to Congress lawmakers urging to block the judgeship of Jeff Sessions in March of 1986. She accused the Alabama Republican of politically-motivated voting fraud prosecutions and Sessions of prosecuting civil rights leaders and racism.

We lost this woman to ovarian cancer on January 30, 2006. We thank you for your contributions and you will continue to live on today. Without you, there would never be an MLK Day.

Read more about Coretta’s historical contributions at HuffPost.