Local activists remember MLK on 50th anniversary of assassination

    Local activists remember MLK on 50th anniversary of assassination (WKEF/WRGT)

    DAYTON, Ohio (WKEF/WRGT) - Fifty years ago Wednesday, Martin Luther King, Jr., was assassinated.

    Pictures of the civil rights icon decorated the walls of Bing Davis' art gallery as he reflected on The Reverend's death.

    "It was a sinking feeling and loss and a heavy, heavy feeling," he said, "and also I remember wondering where do we go from here."

    Davis was working at Dayton Public Schools and heard about the assassination on the radio

    He recalled riots breaking out.

    "It was a tinderbox in most urban areas around our country and we were going through ours here," said Davis.

    He and other black professionals were asked to be peacekeepers in the community.

    "We need to go into the streets and help our young brothers and sisters to stay calm in this period," said Davis.

    Four years before his death, Davis remembered going to the University of Dayton to hear Dr. King speak.

    "To see him and to see the aura around him, you knew he was special and you knew what he was saying and it touched you," said Davis.

    Jessie Gooding met King at U.D. and two other times.

    "I think he was a savior," said Gooding

    The former NAACP Dayton branch president was speaking downtown on civil rights when he heard King was killed

    "And boy i'll tell you, it just, I just about went to pieces. I said 'our peace man is gone' and it really hurt real bad," said Gooding.

    Civil rights group put together a march downtown.

    King's death had a profound impact on them

    "It just forced us or guided us to recommit ourselves to the community and to the neighborhood," said Davis.

    You can see those MLK pictures and meet the artists April 8 from 2 to 4 p.m. at 1135 West Third Street.

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