The President, First Lady, and other dignitaries were in attendance at the 50th anniversary celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s March on Washington, but Yolanda King was the only star of the event. The 5-year-old captured center stage with her adorableness and charm that had the Chief of Staff and others smiling.


President Obama greeted Martin and Arndrea King with a warm hug and bent down to give Yolanda a little tickle during the event. The 5-year-old remained calmed in the face of greatness, letting off a slight smile at the President’s playfulness that was too cute for words. Yolanda later stood by her parents as Martin III and Arndrea sounded the bell in honor of the four girls who died in an Alabama church two weeks after the March on Washington in 1963. Although calm around the most influential people in the nation, little Yolanda did choose to cover her ears when the bell began to toll.

The President gave a powerful speech during the commemoration of one of the greatest moments in history that encouraged Americans to continue to strive towards Dr. King’s dream of unity. “[Dr. King’s] words belong to the ages, possessing a power and prophecy unmatched in our time,” said the President. “[But] To secure the gains this country has made requires constant vigilance, not complacency. To win that battle, to answer that call — this remains our great unfinished business.”

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his ‘I Have A Dream’ speech at the end of the march to Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963. The civil rights activist was assassinated four years later on April 4, 1968. Yolanda is Dr. King’s only granddaughter.

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Sarie is a writer and editor for BCK's Los Angeles division. She also shares stories on Medium that are meant to encourage thought and discussion. You can catch her outside enjoying nature and classical literature. Pop culture is pretty fun, too!

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