SAN ANGELO, Texas- 52 years ago, the Dr. Martin Luther King park was built in San Angelo just a few years after he was assassinated.
“Dr. King was just a wonderful man. Just full of love and changed the whole face of racism and social justice in this country,” said Sherley Spears, a member of the NAACP Executive Committee Board.
While the park is the venue for many events such as Juneteenth, Black Lives Matter marches, and MLK celebrations, the local NAACP chapter is still working to bring proper restrooms to the park.
“It is a park that is widely used by this community, all of San Angelo. We have big events here so we must have comfortable restrooms where a mom can go in and change her baby’s diaper and where you can go in and wash your hands,” said the President of the NAACP, Mechelle Grooms-Reed.
For decades the park has relied on portable toilets and the battle became uphill for the NAACP to secure funding after the city declined to participate. Now a groundbreaking on those restrooms could be in the near future thanks to over 270 thousand dollars being raised by citizens.
“We appreciate again the community of San Angelo and people from around the area, even former residents of San Angelo who contributed to making sure we raised the necessary money,” said Spears.
It’s a project that’s a joint effort from past and present community members so future generations can not only enjoy the space but learn the history of Martin Luther King’s legacy.
“I had fun at MLK park,” said 4-year-old Edith Pool.
The park is a constant reminder of the bravery to fight against injustice. Without it, the slow but steady changes we see today would never have been possible.