NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — A two-day celebration will kick off Friday to honor the late Georgia congressman and civil rights icon, John Lewis.
Saturday marks one year since his death.
Rep. Lewis began his career in civil rights with lunch counter sit-ins in Nashville.
A marker honoring Rep. Lewis was unveiled Friday morning near Fifth Avenue North and Commerce Street.
There will be a memorial service Friday at 6 p.m. at the First Baptist Church Capitol Hill.
City leaders recently renamed a portion of Fifth Avenue North in his honor.
On Saturday at 9 a.m., the street will be formally dedicated to Rep. Lewis with a march to the Ryman Auditorium to follow with a ceremony at 11 a.m. Former Vice President Al Gore is expected to be part of the event.
The Metro Council Minority Caucus and community partners have commissioned local artists to paint a mural in downtown Nashville in honor of Rep. Lewis.
“This mural will honor the contributions of Representative John Lewis and will feature important moments during his time here, including time with prominent Nashville civil rights leaders Diane Nash, Rev. James Lawson, Kelly Miller Smith, Sr., Rip Patton and Kwame Lillard, who fought alongside him for social justice and equality in the south.” said Minority Caucus Chair, Sharon Hurt. “It is fitting for the mural to be placed near the site where Representative Lewis participated in student led nonviolent sit-ins at Woolworth’s on 5th Ave, while he was a student at Fisk University and American Baptist College. Visitors to downtown Nashville will be able to see the mural and hopefully be inspired to learn more about the history of civil rights in our city.”
Artists Lakesha Moore, Herb Williams, Omari Booker and Joseph ‘DoughJoe’ Love, III were selected to create the mural.