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Long County holds MLK observance
Martin Luther King waves to the crowd in a moment from Henry Louis Gates Jr.'s PBS documentary Black America Since MLK: And Still I Rise," now on DVD. - photo by Chris Hicks

Ludowici— The Long County Martin Luther King, Jr. Observance Committee held their annual activities on January 12, 2019.

John L. Jones was honored this year as the Grand Marshal of the 2019 Long County Martin Luther King, Jr. Parade. Jones is very involved in the community. The Long County native attends Pleasant Hill Missionary Baptist Church where he serves on the Deacon and Trustee Ministries, is the Sunday school superintendent and teacher and sings in the church choir. He is also a member of the State of Georgia Juvenile Court Review Panel Board, co-chair of the Long County Planning and Zoning Board and a retired member of the Diversity Board.

Jones also sings in the Wayne County Male Chorus and is the owner and operator of Jones Lawn Service. During the program, the honoree was elated and thanked the committee for selecting him as grand marshal.

“It’s a wonderful day in my life,” he said. 

The featured speaker for the program was Adolphus Farlow. A Ludowici native and a 1985 graduate of Long County High School, Farlow is a registered nurse at Davita Dialysis in Brunswick, Georgia.

The son of Tom and Zethyrie Farlow, he is also a graduate of Brunswick Junior College (now known as College of Coastal Georgia). Farlow told the audience that Dr. King’s dream had turned into a nightmare.

“Over 56 years ago a man had a dream that changed the nation,” Farlow said. “50 years after his assassination, we have shootings in schools. This nightmare must stop.” 

Farlow said to those gathered that sometimes in life we have situations that shake our belief but we must continue to hold onto God’s unchanging hand.

Farlow, who is a member of Macedonia Missionary Baptist Church, stated that although Dr. King was murdered, his living was not in vain because it changed the world. He challenged the audience to join in the fight to help the cause “We can make a difference in our church, community and homes.”

Also during the service, Mary Hamilton gave a memorial tribute to the late Mildred Elder. Hamilton stated that in the late 1970’s Ruth Mallard and Willie Glover organized a walk that was held on Dr. King’s birthday but after their deaths and several people who were key contributors to the walk moved the way, they quit doing it. 

“Mrs. Elder gave me a call and said that it’s time to have a parade in Ludowici and she wanted me to be the chairman,” Hamilton said. She added that Elder, who passed away in December 2018, also wrote a play about Walker High School, but it was never performed. Hamilton hopes to have the production during the 2020 MLK Observance.

Rev. Leroy Lott, the pastor of Greater Historical Elim Missionary Baptist Church, served as the master of ceremonies for the program. Craig Wilson and Gerald Mallard sang solos and The Copes Family sang a medley of songs.

Long County MLK Observance Committee members include Beverly Hill, Ann Thompson, Mary Hamilton, Florence Baggs, Robert Harris, Diane Berry, Bobby Blakely and Marie Harris.

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