Marchers remember MLK during Greensboro’s parade

by Amy Kingsley

Angie Wall and Bishop Clarence first marched with Martin Luther King Jr. a couple years after they married. Now together for 41 years, the couple still makes it a point to attend the annual parade held in honor of the slain civil rights leader.

They’ve seen a lot changes in that time. Wall could point to some of those transformations ‘— like school desegregation ‘— represented by participants that marched down a street named for King on Jan. 17.

‘“That used to be an all-white school,’” Wall said as the Andrews High School marching band passed. Asian, black and white students hoisted flags, banged drums and blew horns.

Clarence and Wall acknowledged that work needs to be done, but on MLK Day, the pair focused on the gains.

‘“We grew up into segregation, so we didn’t know any better,’” Wall said.

‘“We just knew if we were going on the bus, we were sitting in the back,’” Clarence said. ‘“And if a white person got on, we had to move.’”

‘“Parents taught these things to their children, not because they wanted to, but for their protection,’” Wall said. ‘“Then the Lord sent somebody into the world who had a vision and was strong.’”

Then the couple turned back toward the parade as the Smith High School band marched by.