City of Troy honors AL native, Georgia congressman John Lewis
TROY, AL (WSFA) - Feb. 3, 2018 is officially John Lewis Day in the city of Troy.
Lewis is a Georgia congressman and a native of Pike County. He was known by Dr. Martin Luther King as the "boy from Troy."
"Before Dr. King passed, and when I would see him, he would always say to me, 'How is the boy from Troy doing?' And it brought a smile to me," said Lewis.
Lewis organized sit-down demonstrations, and participated in the Freedom Rides. By doing so he suffered brutal beatings. He recalled his more than 40 arrests, attacks and injuries in the 60's during the Civil Rights Movement.
Lewis said that while there are still some things that still need to be changed, the "world is a much better world" than it was a few decades ago.
"The state of Alabama is a much better state. Troy is a much better city and Pike County is a much better county," Lewis said.
At Saturday's ceremony, Lewis was honored by the city of Troy with a historic marker, a key to the city and a portrait.
"I never dreamed there would be a marker for me in Troy, Alabama. So, when I saw it I teared up and I couldn't go on speaking because I think about everything, you know, growing up on a farm about eight miles from here and working on the field picking cotton and gathering peanuts," he said.
Mayor of Troy Jason Reeves said he couldn't think of anyone more deserving of a day than John Lewis.
"To have someone from our community that is just, you know, on the front line that led the fight for civil rights and continues to do so much for so many we just couldn't be any prouder," said Reeves. "We're just honored that he's allowed us to honor him."
Lewis spoke Friday night at the 17th annual Leadership Conference in Troy.
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