JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - After much-heated debate, a final ordinance was passed to rename Commerce Drive to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, and the dream for many became a reality on the national holiday.
“When you believe in something and you want to make a change, you have to use your voice,” said Emma Agnew, president of Craighead County’s National Association for the Advancement of Colored People.
Those gathered Monday at the corner of Highland and Commerce Drives cheered when officials unveiled the new street signs.
“Today is a day of healing, a day of success,” Mayor Harold Perrin said.
Agnew said Monday was a historic day for the City of Jonesboro, and she was happy to see it finally complete.
“For a small town in the South to realize and recognize that this street renaming means so much to so many people and that it is important,” Agnew said.
She said it was something many in the community have wanted for 12 to 15 years. The lesson for generations to come, she said, was to speak up when you truly believe in something.
The ordinance’s sponsors, Councilmen David McClain, LJ Bryant, and Dr. Charles Coleman, were among those at the unveiling.