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Archives Spotlight: MLK at JFK photo

Jan 15, 2016

Civil rights activist and future Nobel Peace Prize recipient Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. flies Delta. 

Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. flies Delta, 1965. Shown in jetway at New York-JFK.

Shown in a jetway at New York-JFK in August 1965, are left to right: Delta Stewardess Merry Kay “Sam” Forrest, Rev. Lee, Stewardess Linda Tomlin, Dr. King and Stewardess Judi Oswald.

We are honored to be able to share this unique snapshot with you, thanks to a donation by Sam Forrest to the Delta Flight Museum. This is the first photo we have of Dr. King's travels on Delta Air Lines flights during the Civil Rights Movement of the 1960s.

When this photo was taken, Sam was a new flight attendant, who had joined Delta in late 1964. Sam says, “I knew Dr. King was an important man, and therefore, I wanted a picture with him to capture that time.” Sam was based in New Orleans then, but most of the flights she worked stopped in Atlanta, so she believes Dr. King had probably just flown from his home in Atlanta to New York City.

Marie Force

Archives Director

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