BILOXI, MS (WLOX) - On April 4, 2018, the day will mark 50 years since Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was assassinated.
In the wake of racial division being more highly publicized, the theme for this year's MLK Coastwide celebration was "Where do we go from here?"
"I think this message about where do we go from here is very important. It's very fitting. I would say, even as we consider where we go, we must do this analysis of where we're currently situated," said Corey Wiggins who is the Mississippi NAACP Executive Director.
Dr. Corey Wiggins who is the executive director of the Mississippi NAACP and this year's keynote speaker.
In a moving speech, he talked about the importance of honoring Dr. King's legacy and analyzed what everyone can do to carry it on.
"It's not just a time to be off work, and to be out of school. I think it's a time for us to recommit to those values and of his legacy about making this world, this place, our communities a better place for all citizens and for all people," said Wiggins.
Three awards were handed out during the service.
James Crowell and Dr. Persharon Dixon received the Dr. Gilbert R. Mason Sr. and Natalie L. Hamlar Mason Medallion of Service awards.
Mayor FoFo Gilich received the Drum major for justice award. He was commended for being a progressive leader. Gilich got emotional when receiving the award.
"You always do the right thing. At some point and time, whatever problem it is, you know what's right and what's wrong, and it's easy to do what's right," said Gilich.
The program also featured riveting spoken word and more selections from the MLK Coastwide Choir.