Meridian Naval Air Station hosted its traditional Martin Luther King Commemoration Service Friday.
The Navy invited retired chaplain Melvin Hendricks to head the program at the NAS chapel. He titled his message, "Dare to Dream".
Hendricks recalled King's famous "I Have a Dream" speech that impacted his own life when he heard it at age 14 and as segregation ended.
"As I sat there on that evening, I had no idea that I would be one of those children who would be sitting in classrooms with white children, marching in the band with white children, becoming friends with white children. I had no idea," said Hendricks. "And whenever I share those times, it's always an emotional time for me."
Hendricks said it's especially meaningful for the young sailors, pilots and Marines at NAS to remember King's message, because they have both time and opportunity ahead of them.