Montgomery remembers Congressman John Lewis year after passing

The body of Congressman John Lewis passes Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church on the way...
The body of Congressman John Lewis passes Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church on the way to the Alabama Capitol Sunday, July 26, 2020, in Montgomery, Ala.(AP Photo/Julie Bennett | AP)
Published: Jul. 19, 2021 at 7:21 AM EDT
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MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - It’s been one year since Congressman and civil rights activist John Lewis’ passing.

He was a voice for freedom, justice, and equality known for getting into what he called “good trouble”. Lewis marched down Montgomery’s Dexter Avenue for voting rights in 1965 toward the state Capitol. His body was carried once again down this historic avenue a final time a year ago.

“It was an honor to see him as it came through and the pageantry related to that to really remind us and the steps that he took in order to make a difference in America,” senior pastor of Dexter Avenue King Memorial Baptist Church Reverend Cromwell Handy said.

Montgomery Senior Policy Advisor Phillip Ensler recalled what it was like to be in Congressmen Lewis’s presence.

“You’re in his presence, and he treats you like you’re the most important thing, and that’s really rare to have a politician, a public servant who has that level of humility and who really genuinely cares it leaves you inspired to know that you can do that much better to make the world a better place,” Ensler said.

That same fight that Lewis and others fought for in 1965 for voting rights continues today. A few states continue to have strict voter laws in place. Many believe the proposed John Lewis Rights Act will restore and strengthen voting rights in America if passed.

Reverend Handy says regardless, it is important that people know that their vote matters.

“We must continue to vote whether our state is red or blue, or if you’re on the winning or losing side, you must continue to vote,” Handy said.

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