NAACP holds an­nual fund ban­quet

The Morning Journal (Lorain, OH) - - FRONT PAGE - By Keith Reynolds

The theme of the Lo­rain Branch of the NAACP’s 57th An­nual Free­dom Fund Ban­quet was NAACP: Stead­fast and Im­mov­able.

The event, held on Sept. 16 at the Ital­ian Amer­i­can Vets Hall, 2567 Ober­lin Av­enue in Lo­rain, fea­tured key­note speaker Marty Eg­gle­ston, pro­fes­sor at Lo­rain County Com­mu­nity Col­lege.

Branch Pres­i­dent E. Jean Wrice said the as­so­ci­a­tion holds the ban­quet ev­ery year as a re­quire­ment from the na­tional as­so­ci­a­tion.

She also said they chose Eg­gle­ston as the key­note speaker be­cause his work with young men lines up with this year’s theme.

“He’s giv­ing guys who’ve been in trou­ble a

sec­ond chance,” she said.

Be­fore the ban­quet be­gan, Eg­gle­ston said he was hon­ored to re­ceive the in­vi­ta­tion to speak at the ban­quet. He said he gives talks like these when­ever he’s asked be­cause he likes to “spread the good news.”

He said his planned re­marks would fit with the event’s theme.

“It’s re­ally about em­pow­er­ment, strength­en­ing self, fam­ily, self-mo­ti­va­tion and then in ad­di­tion to that be­ing able to per­se­vere and be suc­cess­ful,” he said. “That’s kind of my mantra. My play­ers hear it ev­ery day, so I try to share it with ev­ery­one else as well.”

Eg­gle­ston said for him, his road to be­ing stead­fast and im­mov­able started with a good foun­da­tion.

“When I was a teenager, bas­ket­ball be­came my foun­da­tion,” he said. “It was that un­mov­able thing in my life that gave me that sta­bil­ity I needed out­side of my fam­ily. So, in ad­di­tion to giv­ing me sta­bil­ity it gave me in­de­pen­dence.

“Those same skills, at­ti­tudes and be­hav­iors that you’re re­quired to have as a bas­ket­ball player, to play at a high level, those same skills trans­late to life.”

Eg­gle­ston said he hopes his speech will act as a rekin­dling to the as­so­ci­a­tion.

“Of­ten­times we can get so caught up in what we’re do­ing that some­times we lose fo­cus on the pur­pose,” he said. “My goal is that we re­mind our­selves of our pur­pose and we con­tinue on with that.”

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