Remembering the Dream
Martin Luther King Jr. stood in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., in August 1963 and shared his dream.
He dreamt that “rough places will be made plain, crooked places will be made straight … and all flesh shall see it together.”
Roots of that dream began as a preacher and pastor at Ebenezer Baptist Church in the Sweet Auburn area of downtown Atlanta. Last Thursday just a few blocks from Dr. King’s home church, the realization and continuation of his dream marched on.
Community members, local leaders and members of Dr. King’s family unveiled the new outdoor Atlanta Hawks basketball court at Selena S. Butler Park adjacent to the Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation and Aquatic Center.
“It’s an honor to be part of his legacy and continue to push that vision and compassion for one other,” says Agent Cynthia Meertens, Decatur, Ga., who participated in the ceremony. “This holiday and celebration is a reminder of how far we’ve come and an encouragement to continue.”
Atlanta Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms unveiled the court. Among those accompanying her were Dr. Bernice King, Dr. King’s youngest child; Atlanta Hawks Owner Tony Ressler; Atlanta Hawks CEO Steve Koonin; State Farm Assistant Vice President Clarence Hearns, and current and past Atlanta Hawks players.
“The Atlanta Hawks and State Farm are exemplary partners. They continue to invest in communities,” Mayor Bottoms told the crowd. “We thank you for your work in the community and we are grateful for these collaborations.”
The Atlanta Hawks Foundation have pledged to revamp 25 basketball courts in metro Atlanta by 2020. State Farm and the Hawks, two organizations known for giving back to communities, entered an 18-year partnership in September.
Cynthia and fellow Georgia agent, Angela Holloway, are involved in similar events in their communities. Cynthia and her team work closely with Fernbank Elementary School in Decatur on the Socks of Love project that provides items to a men’s shelter in town.
Angela and her team support and serve the organization Save Our Children and Families, which provides awareness and intervention initiatives to abused children.
“If you look at the world today, a lot of people can feel uneasy at times,” says Cynthia. “To be part of Dr. King’s legacy and continuing to push forward that vision and compassion for one another is what he called us to. He is part of everyone’s history.”
And their future.
After the court dedication ceremony, State Farm agents and employees partnered with GoodrCo. to provide a free “pop up” grocery shopping experience to more than 150 senior citizens.
GoodrCo. is an organization that works with restaurants and food vendors to redirect surplus food to those in need.
“It was a good day of service,” says Agent Angela Holloway.