Civil rights activist Marches on Washington 50 years ago; speaks to 400 students in Belle Glade

BELLE GLADE, Fla. - Genese African wasn't expecting much when a guest speaker arrived at glades central high school.

"He's so old and tall, he's not my grandfather, why is he here," said African.

But after the presentation by a civil rights activist---she felt empowered...

"Very motivational, he was a big speaker it was like being in church all over again," said African.

Dr. Walter Richardson told the students he was their age - 15 years old -  when he attended the 1963 march on Washington.

"50 years ago seems like it was just yesterday but here we are today 50 years later," said Richardson.

Speaking to 400 students, Richardson told them what it was like growing up in the south. Drinking from a separate water fountain and being spat upon.
 
"To put someone who walked in the same place where MLK was 50 years ago and to put them in front of our students, it makes history come alive," said Elizabeth Zdrodowski.

Elizabeth Zdrodowski is a teacher and librarian at the school.

"This is just another way that we can reach out to our students and bring the words off of the history books and right in front of them in walking, talking form," said Zdrodowski.

For African, the experience has sparked her interest to learn more.

"He expressed how he was 15, I'm 15 right now and to know that he was there trying to make a change that inspires me to do the same," said African.
 

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