Press Release ● Human and Civil Rights
For Immediate Release: 
January 31, 2006
Contact Info: 
Liz Packard
(202) 225 - 3130

WASHINGTON, DC – House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer (MD) released the following statement today after news that Coretta Scott King, the widow of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., died at the age of 78:

     “America lost a true hero today.  Coretta Scott King was one of the most eloquent and determined civil rights activists in our history, both as a partner to her husband, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., in the fight for equality and justice in the United States, and as the keeper of his legacy after his assassination.  Her grace and her tenacity ensured that the civil rights movement that she helped to pioneer has continued to stay in the forefront of America’s consciousness.

     “A dedicated mother and accomplished musician, Coretta Scott King became a symbol of peace and human rights around the world.   She inspired activists from South Africa to Latin America, and in what is perhaps one of her greatest accomplishments, she helped make Dr. King’s birthday a national holiday.  Each year, this day serves as a reminder to Americans that we must keep working towards equality and justice for all citizens, and it teaches younger Americans about the harrowed journey the country has traveled to fulfill the promise of civil rights.

     “Coretta Scott King’s poise and determination are qualities that we should all appreciate, admire, and remember.  In the way that she carried on Dr. King’s legacy, so too will future generations of Americans continue the fight for civil rights and equality in her name.”