By Michael Billingsley
The morning of January 15, 1976 started out just like any other in the Skyline neighborhood of southeast San Diego, but there were two special things that set this day apart. For one, it was the day before my 14th birthday. Second, it was the birthday of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
There had been a movement to make MLK’s birthday a national holiday—in fact, African Americans all over the country started celebrating before it became a legal holiday. One of the things that appealed to me was that my birthday was on January 16, one day after Dr. King’s and the day before Muhammad Ali’s.