44th anniversary of Bloody Sunday remembered in Selma

Selma, AL (WSFA) -- The sound of "amens" rang throughout Selma today, all to remember an event still touching lives--the 44th anniversary of Bloody Sunday and the crossing of the Edmund Pettus Bridge.

"It has meant so much not only to me personally. I probably wouldn't even be in Congress if it were not for what happened here 44 years ago," says Representative Donna Christensen of the U.S. Virgin Islands.

44 years ago hundreds of voting rights activists tried to march from Selma to Montgomery, but were met by state troopers armed with tear gas and billy clubs. But it was their tireless efforts that have so many thankful, and the reason why thousands marched today.

"It's good to remember the people, not just the leaders, but the people who really made the movement a reality," says Missouri Republican Representative, Roy Blunt.

While today was a celebration of the nation's progress, it was also a chance for many to reflect, saying the struggle for civil rights isn't over.

"We have more work to do. But we're going to do it together. That's how we're going to win because we're going to do it together and redeem, reconcile America to win all battles. The morality of our struggle, in some sense has been a weapon for redemption, and we've made the nation better. We feel good about that," says Civil Rights Activist, Jesse Jackson.

"It's something that you have to work at everyday. You can't stop and say it's done. You gotta keep doing it," says Florida Republican Senator, Bill Nelson.

And these folks are--remembering the sacrifice of those who crossed the bridge years ago and knowing the future is now in their hands.

Reporter: Melissa McKinney