WACO, Texas — Today, many celebrated the life of the man who sparked massive change in the civil rights movement.

“We’ve come a long way but we have so much further to go,” Bellmead Pro-Tem Mayor Travis Gibson said. “And we have to build and continue to build the bridge of understanding.”

That was the message that resounded throughout tonight’s 36 annual Martin Luther King Junior candlelight vigil.

Due to COVID-19 precautions, the vigil was held virtually but that did not stop the community from coming together to remember a legend.

“When they were in a civil rights struggle rain sleet shine or snow, I always said Dr. King did what they had to do to protect us and give us our liberties,” Vigil Co-Founder Coque Johnson-Gibson said. “And they did that, and so we pledged that we would have this candlelight vigil.”

Between the speakers, singers, and poets, the message rang clear that despite the difficulties the community and country have experienced, there is still a way to make a difference.

Author, director, and producer Kerry Ann Frazier explained how one person can make some good trouble which can lead to a big change.

“What can I do? I am just one person,” she said. “In the quote of the late John Lewis, I say learn the art of good trouble.”

“In one city, a rule required all blacks to sit in the rear of public busses,” she told. “But in 1955, when one person started some good trouble when she was told to move to the back of the bus, she said no.”

The vigil ended with a song from Midway High School senior Terrence Reed Junior and some resounding words from Mayor Pro-Tem Gibson, reminding those to remember the past and thanking those who participated.