Hundreds March in Groton for Black Lives Matter
Thu, 06/11/2020 - 5:42pm Heraldgroton
On Sunday afternoon June 7 current and former Groton-Dunstable students along with other young adults in town led a peaceful march, which they planned and organized, for the Black Lives Matter movement. Turnout far exceeded organizers’ expectations. Groton Police Chief Michael Luth estimated that significantly more than 300 marchers were in attendance. Many came on foot to the Middle School gathering site. By 4 p.m. cars were still streaming into the Middle School Parking lots and police said school parking lots were at capacity.
About 4:15 marchers stepped off holding a forest of handmade signs held high. [See photos to the left.] With prearranged police escort and traffic control, the marchers exited the Middle School campus heading east toward the town center, then turning onto School Street, then onto Hollis and ultimately left again onto Champney Street, eventually exiting Champney onto the track behind the Florence Roche elementary School.
At the gathering at the track, after a short introduction, organizers played an excerpt from Martin Luther King, Jr’s speech given in Groton, at the Groton School, on February 4, 1963. Six months later, during the March on Washington, he would deliver his “I Have a Dream” speech. Themes and a few key phrases of the “I Have a Dream” speech were first used in the Groton speech. While the excerpt was being played, most of marchers ‘took a knee’ and some raised their fists in a sign of protest. The quote above is from Dr. King’s February 1963 address in Groton.
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