One Lexington honors Dr. King, his peace efforts


LEXINGTON, Ky. — Since 2021, gun violence has remained a constant factor in Lexington. Some are doing what they can to change that this year while also honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s anti-violence legacy.

What You Need To Know

  • One Lexington is holding a march to remember civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

  • One Lexington has asked the public to wear orange at the annual MLK commemoration to support gun violence prevention

  • The march in downtown Lexington is open to everyone wanting to join the annual celebration

  • The march begins at 1 p.m., and it starts and ends at the Central Bank Center

Families across the commonwealth are returning to downtown Lexington to remember civil rights leader Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on the annual day of honor.

Helping spread a message of peace, anti-violence, and a brighter future for the youth like Dr. King’s, is important for the director of One Lexington, Devine Carama. The team is asking people to wear orange as they march at Monday’s events.

His youth gun violence prevention program is leading to results in the city.

In 2021 alone, there were six shooting investigations involving young people. Last year there were none, according to the Lexington Police Department’s Homicide Investigations Unit.

“We are not seeing a spike right now in 2023, but we can’t stop talking about it. We got to keep our foot on the gas and keep working and so this is just another opportunity for us to get out in front of this instead of being responsive,” Carama said about this year’s record so far. 

The community can play a part in preventing more violence in 2023. Carama said the anniversary of the very first freedom march in the city is a good time to share that reminder.

“We can just talk about this issue when somebody dies, but let’s [also] talk about it before it happens,” Carama said. “And prevention is the main thing that we’re focused on, so that’s one reason we want to make the statement on the 50th anniversary of our MLK march.”

Carama says the work of Dr. King continues to inspire in a modern way years later.  

“We’ll look back in history and what we did right. We have got to challenge ourselves as a people and so I do think it’s a line with MLK’s message, but it’s still capturing the moment of now,” Carama explained. 

The annual freedom march and commemoration started 5 years after Dr. King’s assassination. The celebration of his life-changing efforts includes music, conversations and more to bring together the full experience. It remains a tradition for many around Kentucky and the nation.

The march begins at 1 p.m., and will start and end at the Central Bank Center.