Speaker, Bob Ray Sanders, talks at an event held by the Black Student Association in honor of Black History Month.

Speaker, Bob Ray Sanders, talks at an event held by the Black Student Association in honor of Black History Month.

Though the years have passed the voices still ring.

On Feb. 21, the Black Student Association (BSA) invited students, faculty and staff to celebrate Black History Month.

The BSA meeting began with the singing of the Negro National Anthem, followed by a poem and violin recital by students.  Guest speakers, Fort Worth City Councilwoman, Kelly Allen Gray and Bob Ray Sanders, associate editor/senior columnist at the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, were in attendance.

During her speech, Gray discussed the importance of continuing to honor Black History Month and encouraged students to look for inspirational people in the community.

“You have to know where you come from to know where it is you are going,” Gray said. “But it is not just about the past. It is about the contributions you make for the future.”

Victoria Johnson, freshman mass communication major and vice president of BSA, also delivered a speech highlighting the historical triumph.

“This month, we reflect and observe our past,” Johnson said. “I ask that you remember who fought for you to be here and who sacrificed their own lives for us to live the way we do.”

When it was Sanders’ turn to speak, he focused on the teachings of longtime friend Ossie Davis, American actor, director, playwright, poet, author and social activist. Sanders also discussed his personal experience growing up in Fort Worth.

“I know what it feels like to ride from the back of the bus. I know what it feels like to drink from a water fountain marked ‘colored’. I know that feeling,” Sanders said. “But I also know that there are people, Black people, White people, Hispanic people, who laid down so that I could cross over their backs. Who were there for me. Who were there for you.”

At the conclusion of his speech, Sanders encouraged audience members to do what they can to help others and appreciate their heritage.

Later in the evening from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. students, faculty and staff were invited to join the BSA Festival as a way to end the commemoration.

In addition to the Black History meeting and festival, BSA had many other activities throughout the semester including the showing of a historical film, Freedom Riders and a field trip to the Juneteenth Museum.

For more information on BSA or if students would like to join, email Jay Johnson, BSA president at jejohnson1166@txwes.edu.