Community works together to memorialize a famous partnership
by Mindy Green
A new city landmark is about to be unveiled in San Marcos. The LBJ-MLK Crossroads Memorial, the end-result of years of collaboration between San Marcos and Texas State University, commemorates the combined efforts of Martin Luther King Jr. and President Lyndon B. Johnson to advance the march towards equality.
The memorial, located at the crossroads of LBJ and MLK drives near downtown San Marcos, represents the two historical figures meeting in the Oval Office to discuss the future of the civil rights movement. Inspired by the famous picture taken during that meeting, the statue offers a location for people to contemplate the progress that has been made as well as the paths to equality yet untraveled.
Texas State faculty members and students worked side-by-side with city officials and volunteers to advance this project, with students involved at every stage of the project, including fundraising. Texas State student Meghan Bates worked on the project for three years. She got on board through Diann McCabe, who was Bates’ University Seminar professor and the chairwoman of the LBJ-MLK Memorial Crossroads Committee. “I wanted an adventure in college and this was one I wanted to pursue,” Bates says. “I’m looking forward to seeing our community come together to acknowledge what these two leaders [MLK and LBJ] have accomplished.”
Jonnie Wilson, assistant director in the Office of Student Diversity and Inclusion, also played a vital role in the completion of the project. “What King stood for impacted everyone,” Wilson says, “and that is why this needs to make an impact as well.”
The unveiling of the memorial comes 50 years after President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the Civil Rights Act into law. The LBJ-MLK Crossroads Memorial Dedication Ceremony takes place Monday, January 20, 2014, at 10 A.M. at the Hays County Courthouse. A march to the memorial’s intersection will follow. Artist Aaron Hussey and LBJ’s daughter, Luci Johnson, will be in attendance.
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