Remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.


In February of 1968, Arthur Ashe, then a lieutenant at West Point, received a letter from Martin Luther King, Jr. At that time, he had yet to win a Grand Slam and was not yet a celebrity, although he had won the NCAA singles title while in college and had participated in what would become the US Open and had made it to the finals of the Australian Championships (now the Australian Open).  In the letter, King notes Arthur’s position of authority and the responsibility that goes with it, admiring his commitment to the Civil Rights movement and justice. He ends by stating that he looks forward to meeting Arthur in person.

Unfortunately, they never had the opportunity to meet, King was tragically assassinated two months later. However, if King had lived to see Arthur win the first US Open in September later that year, what do you think he would have said?

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1 reply
  1. Kevin Dowdell
    Kevin Dowdell says:

    Dr. King may have said: “Arthur, I look to a day when people will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character — and maybe the quality of their tennis game so long as it’s you. Great match!”


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