Despite frigid temperatures, hundreds of Louisvillians on Monday joined a motorcade in memory of Martin Luther King Jr., the civil rights icon and activist who reshaped the way mainstream America thought about race and social justice.

The string of buses, trucks and cars stretched for nearly a mile. It departed from 28th Street and Broadway Monday morning, wound through Russell and concluded at King Solomon Baptist Church at 16th and Anderson streets.

WFPL spoke with residents during the motorcade and at the church to get a sense of what King’s life means to them — and whether they believe the equality he fought for exists nearly 50 years after his death.

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“I will always honor Martin Luther King because he was a man amongst men, and he wanted justice for all the people. And even though we still don’t have it, we’re still going to keep marching to that drum until we get it.” —James Washington

Anthony HarrisJacob Ryan |

Anthony Harris

“We’re blessed because of Dr. King.” —Anthony Harris

Elonda WellsJacob Ryan |

Elonda Wells

“We have freedom to do whatever we need to do and live as human beings as we should have always been able to do.” —Elonda Wells

Kimberly FantJacob Ryan |

Kimberly Fant

“We’re keeping the dream alive.” —Kimberly Fant

James HoltJacob Ryan |

James Holt

“I think the majority of the things he fought for we’re still fighting for because nothing’s changed. The rich get richer at the expense of the poor, and women are being exploited and people are still judged on the color of their skin instead of the content of their character.” —James Holt

Chester BurrellJacob Ryan |

Chester Burrell

“His life has made our life a better life to live. Now we have better jobs, we get to go places, we’re not treated as the second kind, we’re treated as equals now.” —Chester Burrell

The MLK motorcade rolls east on Chestnut Street in the Russell neighborhood.Jacob Ryan |

The MLK motorcade rolls east on Chestnut Street in Russell.

Jacob Ryan is a reporter for the Kentucky Center for Investigative Reporting.