Students travel to D.C. to March on Washington

A group of Albany State University students travel to Washington D.C. for a historic moment. / Jessica Fairley

August 24th marks the 50th anniversary on the historical March on Washington.

A group of Albany State University students have landed in Washington D.C. to participate in the festivities.

They'll march with people from all over the nation who are also at the United States capital to commemorate the historic time in American history.

Fifty years ago Rutha Harris, of The Freedom Singers, pushed her way through the crowd in Washington D.C. to sing before thousands who came out in support of Civil Rights.

"Freedom is a constant struggle there's always going to be something that we have to fight for," said Rutha Harris, Civil Rights Activist.

The day of the march Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. performed his famous 'I Have a Dream' speech, building up hope for the future.

"It was a spirit inside that enjoyed the people getting together non-violently for jobs, freedom and to get the respect that afro Americans all over the world needed at that particular time," said Juanita Gardner, a retired school teacher and Civil Rights Activist.

Juanita H. Gardner was back in Atlanta fighting for Civil Rights while her sister, Rutha Harris, sang with The Freedom Fighters.

Back then voting rights was an issue and today Rutha Harris says it still is.

"The Voting Rights Act that we thought was done, now we still got to fight to vote and there's still people who are trying to keep us from voting," said Harris.

Fifty years after the March on Washington, Albany State University students are back in Washington D.C. to commemorate the day and to keep the torch of freedom alive.

"We actually got to meet Jessie Jackson, we got to meet Al Sharpton and talk to them about some of the issues that are relevant to the state," said Kevious Bass, ASU Student Government Association member.

Education has been called the Civil Rights issue of today but the fight for education is tied to the struggles of the past.

"We can't do anything about education without having the right to vote," said Kevious Bass.

That's why the students have put on their walking shoes to march with the crowd, hoping to make sure the work of activist like Ruth Harris and her sister, Juanita Gardner, was not in vain.

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