NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) — One of the most influential figures in American history was recognized across Southeast Louisiana on Monday as dozens gathered for marches and ceremonies honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

In New Orleans, the itinerary included a peace march and rally from the city’s MLK monument to A.L. Davis Park in Central City. As the city copes with record-breaking crime, community members say now is more important than ever to strive for peace.

“It means a lot because we’ve lost a lot of what Dr. King was fighting for,” said W.C. Johnson with the New Orleans United Front. “We have crime that is outrageously high. We have people who disrespect one another. And what it is is we’re here today to make a statement to say it’s time for a change. It’s time to embrace those things that were valuable to us in the past. We now must give them value today and in the future.”