Chattanooga holds Day of Service on MLK Day

Local leaders say King exemplifies service, provides inspiration to help others

CHATTANOOGA (WDEF) — Nearly 55 years after his death, Chattanooga celebrated the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

Mayor Tim Kelly addressed the city online Monday morning, saying King “dedicated his life to serving others.”

“His charge remains just as critical for our community and for our nation,” Kelly said. “We can make long-lasting, positive change together if we act with that same urgency today. There’s no act too small to make a difference.”

To honor King, numerous service projects were held Monday all throughout the city.

Some students repainted their school’s classrooms while Chattanooga Parks and Outdoors cleaned out trails and debris at nearby Greenway Farm.

Parks Outreach Coordinator Sofia Rudakevych, like Dr. King, believes we all have “the ability to give back.”

“Whether it’s small or big, whether it’s in a parade, at the food kitchen, in the Parks landscaping, or in the schools — wherever it is that you feel called to help, there’s always a need an opportunity to assist,” Rudakevych said.

Carel Tate has lived a life of service, having formerly served in the U.S. Army.

Tate says King exemplifies service and that he and his fellow men in the American Legion are still ready to provide it.

“We’re here to help the community, veterans, to help the youth as well,” Tate said. “Our job is to get out here to see what the needs of the community [are]. Then we’ll be able to take that back to our organization and go out in the community and assist them, as well.”

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