Cocoa Dedicates Fiske As MLK Jr. Memorial Highway
By Space Coast Daily // October 18, 2014
City unveiled signs at latest Council Meeting
BREVARD COUNTY • COCOA, FLORIDA – The Cocoa City Council unveiled signs at last week’s council meeting that dedicate the portion of Fiske Boulevard located inside the Cocoa City limits as the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Highway.
The Senate passed Bill 820 Section 57 that designated this Cocoa roadway as of July 1, 2014.
Tuesday was chosen to unveil the signs as it was the 50th anniversary of Dr. King receiving the Nobel Peace Prize.
The Cocoa City Council has been pushing for years to dedicate a roadway within the City to the Civil Rights leader and activist.
Deputy Mayor Clarence Whipple, Jr. suggested Fiske Boulevard as the chosen roadway due to its alignment with other significant streets such as Rosa L. Jones, Stone Street, Barbara Jenkins Street and Blake Avenue, all named for local civil rights activists.
Alberta Wilson, Florida State Conference of the NAACP Area Director recalls meeting with the Cocoa City Council in the early 1990’s to push this dedication.
“I wrote a letter to Cocoa’s Council when I was the President of the Central Brevard Branch of the NAACP requesting this very important dedication be made. I am so glad that with the assistance of Deputy Mayor Whipple and the rest of Cocoa’s City Council, this has finally come to fruition,” said Wilson, who is the NAACP Area Director for Brevard, Orange and Osceola counties.
The request was never passed, but was recently brought up by resident Ruth Collins who attended a Cocoa City Council meeting in 2012 requesting that council revisit the topic.
Other streets such as Clearlake Road and State Road 524 were mentioned as possible locations for this dedication. Fiske Boulevard was unanimously chosen by council in November 2013 as the location for this designation.
“The City of Cocoa is a pioneer in Brevard County with this dedication and I am proud to be a part of this momentous occasion honoring the great Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.,” said Deputy Mayor Clarence Whipple.