Watch CBS News

Groundbreaking For MLK Memorial 'The Embrace' Held On Boston Common

BOSTON (CBS) - State and city leaders gathered Wednesday on Boston Common for the groundbreaking of a new memorial honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his wife Coretta Scott King.

The Embrace, a 22-foot sculpture featuring interlocking bronze arms, will be near the Parkman Bandstand, where Dr. King led a rally and spoke in 1965. According to King Boston, it "invites visitors to gather and enter into the Kings' embrace."

They hope to unveil the completed memorial on Monday, January 16, which is MLK Day 2023.

The memorial also celebrates King's connection to the area. Years before his iconic 1963 speech at the Lincoln Memorial, Boston was home to a young Martin Luther King Jr. He lived on Mass. Ave and studied at Boston University. It was there where he would earn a PhD in systematic theology and become Dr. King. Boston is also where he met Coretta Scott.

"This is the sort of thing that requires everybody to embrace the notion that every day if you're not moving forward, you're moving back," Gov. Charlie Baker said at the ceremony. "And I really do hope this memorial and all it stands for, and the work that will be done by the center going forward will be there as a constant reminder to all of us of all that's left to be done."

The groundbreaking came on the 95th anniversary of Coretta Scott King's birthday.

"These are troubled times," Rev. Liz Walker said at the ceremony. "But this day gives us great hope that we will learn from and embrace the lessons of our past and then act on them."

The title of the piece, "The Embrace," is a fitting one, Mayor Michelle Wu said. "Our goal is signifying every single day that we embrace everyone that finds their way to Boston."

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.