By DL White
The Chandler Men of Action (CMOA), hosted a Candlelight Service on Sunday, January 15, the actual day of Dr. King’s birth 94 years ago in Atlanta, Ga.
The eclectic service epitomized Dr. King’s dream of a society coming together in appreciation of one another.
Pastor Victor Hardy, Congregational Church of the Valley, served as host and master of ceremonies.
Active and viable in the East Valley, Hardy delighted the audience with a solo as well. “When the spirit hits you, you just gotta get it out,” said Hardy.
The program included elected officials, service providers, educational and religious members of the community.
The service was accentuated with remarks and a welcome from Chandler Mayor Kevin Hartke, and City Council members O.D Harris and Christine Ellis who promised to work toward a society in which all individuals would be valued and receive a fair and equal opportunity to rise to their abilities.
Trinity Donovan, CEO of longtime service provider AZCEND, a program that provides food to Chandler’s and east valley families since 1960 commented on her companies mission and compassion to assist much like Dr. King’s life mission.
Miss Teen Chandler, Shaundrea Norman shared and reflected on several of Dr. King’s statements reminding those in attendance, “everyone can be great and serve, it only require a will and commitment to do so.”
Norman an honor student at Chandler HS wl matriculate at Prairie View AM University in the fall.
Pastor Myeong Soon Yang, brought greetings and reflected on Dr. King’s work and service to his fellow man.
Said, the Pastor, “We can all serve and do our parts.”
Dr. Adams Sallu, the Equity and Diversity Director for Chandler Unified School District, shared Dr. King’s concept of the “arc of the moral universe” and how it bends toward justice.
“Chandler is a growing community but we still have small town appeal. Our city government is open and welcome your ideas and criticism as well.
” We are here to serve you. Dr. King spoke often of loving and living together as Brothers and sisters. In Chandler we welcome everyone and our door is always open,” shared the Mayor, as he exited for another commitment.
Educator, author and historian DL White closed the program reflecting on Dr. King’s life and legacy.
In White’s remarks he used poems See it Through and the Bridge Builder paralleling Dr. King’s life to each.
“Our goal and mission is to inform, educate and support this community as best we can,” offered CMOA officer Steve Carson, a retired Educator and former Track Coach for Chandler HS.
CMOA VP David Woodard, a retired police officer shared final remarks and closed the program as CMOA member Terry Yaweh opened the program with a prayer.
Danny L. White currently lives in Phoenix, AZ. He is the author and creative lead for the Sensational letter “S”, a children’s book focused on early reading comprehension and word development. He is also a Adjunct faculty member at Maricopa College, and staff reporter for the Arizona Informant. He is an active member of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc, in Phoenix.