LIMA — Working to keep Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.’s dream alive, the annual MLK Dinner was held Sunday night at the Lima Towers on South Main Street.
Pastor Wayne Bradley was one of those who received an I Have A Dream award for his efforts with “I Can Celebration Ministries.”
“First off, I feel like it’s almost a dream, because the things that happen that make a difference in people’s lives often come from the dreams of others,” Bradley said. “So I really feel blessed because of what God is allowing us to do today, and it’s a direct result of us believing somebody else. What better award for us to win than one that talks about him [King] and what he believed because that’s the real dream. I think that’s the dream of all people. I think that’s the dream of everyone, and that dream, plain and simply [is] unity among people getting something done for humanity.”
Otis Pearson received the Furl Williams Award, which is in honor of the former Lima City Council President.
“Furl Williams had been an icon in this community,” Pearson said. When we were growing up, we grew up looking for a role model. We found a role model in Mr. Furl Williams. He always had a kind word to say to us. It is a privilege and an honor to receive this award because this man [Furl Williams] has done so much to keep Martin Luther King’s dream alive. I just thank God for this award and I thank him [Williams] for being that role model that allowed me to be who I am today. By following Mr. Furl Williams’ footsteps I can try to be the man he is. He had big footsteps to fill. A lot of people really thank him for showing us a way, a path, that didn’t lead to destruction. It led to trying to make Lima a better place.”
In addition to the awards to Pearson and Bradley, Kesha Drake and Patricia Freeman were named Persons of the Year. Hattie Irons won the Rosa Parks Award. Headliners Barber Shop received the Larry Watkins Award. Sharon Downton was named winner of the Alberta Shurelds Award. Mary Jana Williamson won the Mary Coleman Award. Tom Jones, Delores Joiner, Willia Mae Lewis and Major T. Gordon won the I Have A Dream Awards.
Soul Food Restaurant, Waste Management, Superior Credit Union, Wannamacher Trucking and Nickel Steel Credit Union were named Businesses of the Year by Lima 6th Ward Councilman Derry Glenn.
Reach Sam Shriver at 567-242-0409.