Columbia, SC (WLTX) --Ninety-eight year-old Mary Hunter, can recall Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. when he was alive.
"I remember the energy and how hard he worked and how he believed," she said.
Now in 2014, she has a dream of her own: for people to get involved and fight for changes in education and to motivate our young people to greatness, especially the young men.
"We're not doing enough. As a people, we need to get busy," said Hunter.
That same idea is what motivated others to rally at the State House in honor of King at the 2014 SC NAACP King Day at the Dome. They came to say thank you for what King didand continue his work.
"Number one, out of respect, he's a great man. He should be remembered for that and two, so that we will not forget where we came from," Judah Edmond.
"If it weren't for Martin Luther King, Jr. a lot of us wouldn't be able to speak, go to school, anything, so that's why I'm out here," added Ricardo Goodwin.
Speakers addressed the crowd with words about where the state and country still needs to go.
"We must vote as we have never voted before. We must vote in every election," said Lorraine Miller, Interim President and CEO of the NAACP.
"It's mighty low for this state to still fly the confederate flag, nearly 146 years after the end of the Civil War," said Rev. William Barber.
"Our children are supposed to be enjoying the milestones of progress and civil rights, yet it would seem as if time had stood still," added Jackie Hicks, President of the South Carolina Education Association.
Stephanie Rudolph attended the rally with her mother and daughter. She says King's teachings can still be used today.
"Know that we are all human beings striving, working for the same thing, striving for the same things in life. It's just a different color on the outside, but love in our hearts would stop some of the hatred that we see going on," said Rudolph.
While many, like Hunter, say there is still work to be done, they remain thankful to King, who paved the way.
"I'm very grateful to him, I think we owe him an awful lot," said Hunter.