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Minnesota National Guard
Guard leaders meet with General Colin L. Powell at MLK Breakfast

Everybody can be great, because everybody can serve
- Dr Martin Luther King, Jr

On the inauguration of our nation's first African-American commander-in-chief, the Twin Cities was host Jan 19 to the nation's first African-American Secretary of State: General Colin L Powell

Powell was in town to deliver the keynote address at the 19th Annual Dr Martin Luther King, Jr Holiday Breakfast, held at the Minneapolis Convention Center in downtown Minneapolis
"As long as we have these annual celebrations, we will keep [King's] dream fresh and alive, from year to year," said Powell in his address to the gathering

The Minnesota National Guard is well represented at the breakfast every year, all in part to maintain its good relations within the community, according to Lt. Col. Trancey Williams, equal employment officer with the 34th "Red Bull" Infantry Division

Minnesota National Guard leaders had the opportunity to meet separately with Powell prior to his address

In the address, Powell recounted his days as a young officer training at Camp Ripley, and also recognized the present Minnesota National Guard Soldiers who will be deploying to Iraq with the 34th "Red Bull" Infantry Division in February

"No generation is any greater than the current generation of GIs who are serving today, and many of them are here today, getting ready to go to Iraq," said Powell "We should thank them and congratulate them"

Powell talked about how Dr Martin Luther King was not just a Baptist minister fighting racism in Montgomery, Ala, but was also leading a fight all around the world - against poverty, injustice, and hopelessness

Powell is sure that, if he were still here with us, King would have been up on the inauguration platform with President Barack Obama, beaming with pride But Powell also said that, after congratulating Obama, King would look to the new president and say, 'look here, Mr President, I need to see you tomorrow I have some things'

According to Powell, King would never rest or be satisfied

"It is up to us, in his memory, in his honor," said Powell "We must never rest We must never be satisfied"

Written by Spc Thomas Keeler
Minnesota National Guard Public Affairs
January 25, 2009
Jan. 19, Guard leaders meet with General Colin L. Powell at MLK Breakfast - Low-Res

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