ALBANY, N.Y. -- Dr. King set the foundation for the civil rights movement, and even 44 years after his death, he remains a beacon of hope.
Hundreds gathered inside the Empire State Plaza Convention Center to remember and honor the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
The morning filled with song as everyone celebrated the birth of a man who helped move this country forward.
"I'm picking up where he left off. His job is mine. I'm martin; I'm Malcolm, a young Obama in his prime," said 11-year-old Nagihr Nijel Jones.
Another American hero, Tuskegee Airman Herbert Thorpe, was honored as well -- receiving the 2013 Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Humanitarian award.
Nearly 1,000 black pilots were trained at the Tuskegee Airfield School during WWII at a time of deep prejudice and inequality.
"Everyone, everyone can serve and if you can help somebody along the way, your living will not be in vain," said Thorpe.
For Lisa Good and her family, the legacy of Dr. King echoes forward, his messages of nonviolence, social justice, and equality remain just as relevant today.
Good works in her community so her granddaughter Taylor and other children can live the dream envisioned decades ago.
"I pray that she would have be able to live her life and not have to bury her classmates or friends because of senseless violence," said Good.
Immediately following the celebration, people marched to the Lincoln Park King Memorial for a wreath-laying ceremony.