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Boiseans Mark The 1963 March On Washington

Frankie Barnhill
Boise State Public Radio

About 100 people gathered at the Anne Frank Memorial Park in Boise Wednesday afternoon to remember this day 50 years ago when Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. gave his famous “I have a Dream”speech.

One of the Boiseans who attended the historic March on Washington in 1963 was Yvonne McCoy. McCoy grew up in Virginia, and was 15 at the time. She says that even as a young girl, she was involved with the civil rights movement.

McCoy says she knew then that the march was historic and important – but she couldn’t have predicted the progress that would be made.

“There would be no President Obama without that march," says McCoy. "There wouldn’t have been – right here in Idaho – Senator Cherie Buckner-Webb, the first African-American woman to be elected to the Idaho state Legislature. That wouldn’t have happened if that march hadn’t come first.”

But McCoy says there is still more to be done in the fight for racial equality. She points to the recent Supreme Court decision changing voting rights laws.

“But if we continue to be vigilant, if we continue to work toward making America a better place, we will fully achieve that dream,” McCoy says.

Frankie Barnhill was the Senior Producer of Idaho Matters, Boise State Public Radio's daily show and podcast.

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