Black History Month profile: Coretta Scott King


With Black History Month here, we would love to talk about an iconic African-American woman who was an influential activist. Coretta Scott King was an American activist, author, and civil rights activist. She was married to Martin Luther King Jr., who was unfortunately assassinated. Mrs. King was an advocate for African-American equality. She heavily influenced the civil rights movements of the 1960s. Mrs. King was born April 27, 1927, in Heiberger, Al. She loved music and her music was often affected by her activism and what she experienced throughout her life. Mrs. King met her husband Martin Luther King Jr. at graduate school in Boston. They formed their love together which inspired their love for civil rights. After her husband was assassinated, Mrs. King had a very prominent role. When she took on the role of fighting for racial equity, she became active in the Women’s Movement. Mrs. King then founded the King Center, and fought to make Mr. King’s birthday a national holiday. She finally succeeded when Ronald Reagan signed legislation MLK day in 1983. After the civil rights movements were over, she broadened her advocacy for LGBTQ rights and opposition to apartheid. Due to the brutal assassination of Mr. King, Ms. King formed friendships with many politicians such as John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, and Robert F. Kennedy. John F. Kennedy and Mrs. King’s telephone calls heavily piqued the interest of the African-American voters. Unfortunately, in 2005, Coretta suffered a stroke which left her paralyzed. Five months later, she passed away due to her ovarian cancer causing her respiratory system to fail. Mrs. King’s funeral was attended by 10,000 people, including many United States presidents. She was temporarily buried on the grounds of the King Center,  until being buried with her husband. Mrs. Coretta Scott King was a beautiful, influential soul who became known as the “First Lady of the Civil Rights Movement.” She will forever be remembered.