“This is not the kind of history that is stored in a museum. It is an eternal heritage that must be remembered each day of our lives.” It is with these words Pastor Ray Robinson from Living Word Church, Lorain, summarized the spirit of the celebrations of Black History Month at LCCC, at the closing ceremony on February 27, 2014.
The month-long celebrations of Black History Month came to a conclusion with speeches from speakers like Ms. Janice W. Warner, President and CEO of Community Action Commission of erie, Huron and Richland Counties, Inc (CACEHR), and Pastor Ray Robinson. It also saw the prize distribution ceremony for various events like Essay Writing, Scavenger Hunt and Trivia Contest. The lunch saw a conglomeration of several African-American achievers from Lorain and nearby areas.
Wyato Segun (nee Leonard Church), an attendee at the event, adopted his Nigerian tribe name in 2004 and is a professional boxer turned coach. He does social work in Lorain and nearby areas. He adopted his West African tribal name to “honor my grandfather and his rich heritage”. He works for the community through his contributions in “educating and training young black men in the area of boxing and athletics”. Segun said, “I work with the Muslim community, the big brother program, Rotary club. I live in Erie but work with people from all over Lorain, Erie and Huron.” He emphasized the importance of giving back to the community, “Without the community we can not achieve anything and without God we cannot be anything. So we should be involved with the community. That is the message I am trying to spread and I’m glad to see that LCCC is as dedicated to this as I am.”
The keynote speaker Ms. Janice W. Warner commended LCCC’s efforts “at highlighting the contributions of us colored people”. She further said, “I know what it is to be poor, I was very poor once. So I know the importance of working for the upliftment of the poor. The society has a responsibility to ensure that everyone has a good, secure life. CACEHR will be in the forefront of seeing the decline of poverty.”
Pastor Robinson kept the audience engaged with his inspirational words, “Add something in life that is unique and exclusive. We are all special, we just need to find it. Rosa Parks, Martin Luther King were all ‘cultural architects’. They knew what they wanted to do, and it was unselfish. They made it into a heritage, not a history. Heritage tells me that we are all connected.”
Prizes were given to the winners of various contests. Mayaya Phiri won the essay writing contest. The topic of the contest was ‘What does Black history mean to you’. Arnetta LeSure and D’Ajirae Gaddy won the second and third places respectively.