GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. (KREX) — People of all walks of life joined Black Citizens and Friends organization on Martin Luther King Jr. Day for a march that’s part of a movement. Blacks currently make up a small percentage of the Grand Valley, but residents are grateful that this federal holiday does not get ignored.

“It’s a real celebration down here for Martin Luther King’s birthday and I’m glad that all the people showed up,” Grand Junction Resident Tracy Winfield describes, “It’s not that Grand Junction is a small city but there’s a big turnout down here and it’s really nice.”

The march in honor of Dr. King’s birthday and work has been a Grand Junction tradition for decades. The theme for this year’s march is “What have you done for others?”

One message David Combs and his team want to communicate is what the King family wants the country to focus on: voting rights.

“As an individual, you have to determine what’s in your best interest,” Black Citizens and Friends David Combs expresses, “Is it a single act or is it something that you, your neighbor your children your parents have the ability to do? That’s vote.”

The National Day of Racial Healing is the day after Martin Luther King Jr. Day, so conversations for racial equity and positive change continue.

“We need to take the race and then prejudice out of out of everybody’s conversation and just talk about being human beings here,” Winfield continues, “We’re all the same, no matter what color, we all came from Jesus and God and we’re here now, so we might as well enjoy it.”

Commemorating Dr. King’s legacy, supporting the John Lewis Voting Rights Act and the Freedom to Vote Act to pass are just some of many ways Black lives matter.

Grammy award-winning artist Stevie wonder wrote his happy birthday song in 1980 to support Dr. King’s birthday becoming a federal holiday, which didn’t happen until 1983 and observed for the first time in 1986.