From left: Breana, Roger, Roger III and Demetrius Summers. (Photo: Joyce Jones/BET)
Roger Summers, 40, and his children, Breanna, 8, Roger III, 12, and Demetrius, 10, embarked on their March on Washington road trip late Friday from Statesville, North Carolina, arriving at the Lincoln Memorial at an hour when many of their fellow marchers were still asleep.
Summers, a chief foreign officer with the U.S. Marine Corps, had not yet been born in 1963, but, he said, "there was no way" he wouldn't be at today's march.
"I absolutely did not want to miss it and I didn't want [the children] to miss out," he said. "This is a teachable moment for them."
His namesake agreed, and said he'd learned a lot about Martin Luther King Jr.'s legacy, including the fact that African-American's still have some distance to travel before achieving true equality.
"Even though we have come a long way as a nation, there's still a long way to go, which we all knew," Summers said. "But the biggest takeaway from today is that we all have to participate. No one can sit back and rest on the laurels of our forefathers."
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