NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB)– The nation celebrated Juneteenth being declared a federal holiday for the first time Saturday and Western New York was no exception.
Niagara Falls held its second annual “Overcoming Adversity” event in honor of Juneteenth. The ceremony, put on by peacemaker and founder Jacob J Fleming Sr, saw dozens of people come out to speak about the importance of the holiday and honoring some community members that were lost.
Fleming presented last year’s flag to Mayor Robert Restaino who spoke about the historical meaning of the day.
“It is the most important thing that we can do to not only honor the memory of this day but honor all those who have sacrificed for us to be here today.”
Last year was Niagara Falls’ first Juneteenth celebration in recent history. However, Saturday’s flag-raising ceremony was the first time the flag was flown.
Kelly Khatib is a digital reporter who has been part of the News 4 team since 2019. See more of her work here.