It has been 40 years since Martin Luther King Jr was assassinated at the balcony of the Lorraine motel in Memphis, Tennessee,United States which is now a National Civil Right Museum.
Mostly remembered for his I have a dream speech, King Jr was a leader of the Civil Rights Movement and winner of the 1964 Nobel Peace Prize Award. He was a man of vision, as a Baptist minister he was a moral leader with his charisma and powerful way of speaking. Many people took to the streets in riots all over the United States in outrage of the murder,although the FBI was investigating the murder many believed that they were responsible.
Despite many conspiracy theories,most of the evidence pointed to a man named James Earl Ray, an escaped convict. It is said that he used newspapers and live television news to get the location of King Jr. After a two month long international manhunt,James Earl Ray was captured at Heath-row airport in London. He pleaded guilty to the murder and was given a 99 year sentence and died in prison in 1998.
Many believe that he predicted his coming death as he said ” Well, I don’t know what will happen now; we’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop. And I don’t mind. Like anybody, I would like to live a long life – longevity has its place. But I’m not concerned about that now. I just want to do God’s will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain. And I’ve looked over, and I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people will get to the Promised Land. And so I’m happy tonight; I’m not worried about anything; I’m not fearing any man. Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord” in a speech addressing striking workers a day before he was killed. Here is to celebrating one of the greatest civil rights leaders and may his legacy live on.