PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Two Chester County women traveled to Washington, D.C. Friday for an important anniversary. It was a trip they’d planned for months, but it took on even greater importance given recent events.
Thousands of protesters descended on the nation’s capital on the 57th anniversary of the March on Washington.
“It was nothing but love from everyone,” Shamira Womack said.
“It was thousands of people around us and nothing bad happened,” Jessica Showell said. “It was a positive day.”
Showell and Womack, both from Chester County, had planned this trip for months.
“Let’s go down to D.C. and be a part of this march because it’s very important,” Womack said. “With everything that’s going on in the climate in America, we have to be part of it. It’s history.”
“We will get your knee off our neck,” Rev. Al Sharpton said.
The march was organized in part by Sharpton after police killed George Floyd in Minneapolis back in May. But Friday’s demonstrators took on new significance after Jacob Blake was shot by a police officer in Kenosha, Wisconsin, on Sunday.
Family members of both men spoke at the Lincoln Memorial on Friday.
“I wish George was here to see this right now,” Philonise Floyd, George Floyd’s brother, said.
Attendees also heard from the family members of Breonna Taylor.
“What we need is change and we’re at a point where we can get that change,” Tamika Palmer, Taylor’s mom, said.
“With everything going on, it makes you very emotional to see what’s going on with the shooting and the killing and the police brutality,” Showell said, “but I think today shed a positive light on what we can do together as people when we come together.”
Also speaking was Yolanda Renee King, the granddaughter of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
“We are going to be the generation that dismantles systemic racism once and for all,” Yolanda said.
“She was amazing. She came out like guns blazing,” Womack said. “On fire.”
“I think her point was coming together for one purpose and that’s what she was trying to get across,” Showell said.