Demonstrators take part in Martin Luther King Jr. march

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Hundreds of New Mexicans celebrated Martin Luther King Jr. day a little early by marching together.

Saturday, a parade and march started in Albuquerque at University and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Ave. and ended at Civic Plaza.

It was a way to not only celebrate King’s birthday but to also honor his legacy on civil rights.

Participants say it’s an important tradition.

“It’s absolutely critical. Otherwise, we lose our focus on the issues that not only face our whole society but particularly our black community,” said Charlie and Dee Ivy, march participants.

The march was followed by a commemorative ceremony with various speakers.

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