EVERETT, Wash. (NNS) -- Naval Station Everett Sailors gathered to remember the life and accomplishments of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. during a ceremony Jan. 15.
Lt. James Johnson, Destroyer Squadron 9 chaplain, opened the event by reminding Sailors to commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s life and the values he shared with the world.
"An overall spirit of his message transcends time and is applicable to the present and to a global community," he said. "As the official holiday approaches, let us plan for a day of service and of education, so that it will truly be a day on and not a day off."
The guest speaker, Aaron Reardon, Snohomish County Wash. county executive, spoke about King's ideas and how Sailors are defending a way of life.
"This nation is under attack by outside forces who don't believe in the values we share as Americans," Reardon said. "They don't believe in the human civil rights that we share. The men and women in this room are defending the values and virtues of Dr. Martin Luther King like no one else. It's alive more in your hearts and the work that you do on a daily basis than it is anywhere else.
"On Monday, I'll be thankful that I live in a community where just outside my front door I hear the bugle in the morning call to order the men and women in this room to defend my rights in a county that embraces humanity. It embraces opportunity. It embraces rights that allow my daughter to pursue her career, regardless of what it is," Reardon added.
NAVSTA Everett Commanding Officer, Capt. Thomas Mascolo, encouraged military and civilians to honor King's life.
"In this day of international cooperation, it is more important than ever for us to focus on the values that Dr. King championed, particularly courage to stand in times of danger and controversy," he said. "I want to remind those taking a holiday on Monday to honor his legacy of acting courageously for the welfare of others."
Reardon also thanked Sailors for their service to the country.
"It is an honor to be among people who believe in the values of liberty, opportunity and human rights and who do more than just believe them, but fight for my rights as a human being and the constitution of this great country which gives us those rights."
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