Regular readers of this blog will recall that I've written before that though I was born in San Antonio, I was a seven-year old First Grader growing-up in Memphis when Dr. King was assassinated there.
On the night of April 4, 1968, my family and I went out to our neighborhood McDonald's and when we returned to our apt., I walked into the living room and turned on our black-and-white TV, and within no time, everything in the world changed... see my Instagram post about it below.
CBS News: CBS Evening News anchor Walter Cronkite announces the assassination of Dr. King in Memphis.
ABC News video: ABC News correspondent Tom Jarriel reports LIVE from Memphis, with Bob Young and Peter Jennings reporting from New York.
"Faith is taking the first step even when you don't see the whole staircase." - Martin Luther King, Sept. 1962. #MLK I was a young kid living in #Memphis with my family that April night in 1968 when we returned home from a trip to #McDonalds and like so many nights before, I raced to the TV set in the living room to beat my two younger sisters to be the one who turned on the TV. As my parents walked in and settled down on the family couch, to see what was on TV, literally, within one minute, came the Breaking News that Dr. King had been shot elsewhere in the city. And the news only got worse as the night went on as news soon confirmed that Dr. King had died as a result of the assassination attempt, and soon there was widespread looting and violence in Memphis, the very things he had adamantly opposed. Eventually came the news that the city was under curfew, and sometime before midnight, because my family lived in a new-ish apt. complex that was on the same road as the nearby Armory, my parents and I and many of our neighbors watched in silence from the sidewalk/curb as tanks driven by members of the mobilized National Guard drove towards downtown Memphis, because the city's powers-that-be had decided that this would show the people who was boss. As my mother tells the story, one of my neighbors remarked on the irony of U.S. Army tanks being used to try to stop violence by Americans who were upset about the murder of a great man who had won the #NobelPeacePrize. It was the first time I remember ever hearing this strange word: #irony.
We moved to South Florida three months later, my family having had its fill of Memphis, arriving at MIA on a very warm July day via Delta Airlines the day after Larry Csonka signed his first contract with the Dolphins, which was front page news in the Miami Herald, as I could tell when we walked past the old-fashioned-vending machines at the airport.