Dodgers' Matt Kemp Serves as Grand Marshal for Kingdom Day Parade

The Kingdom Day Parade also featured former Dodgers players

By Jonathan Lloyd
|  Sunday, Jan 20, 2013  |  Updated 12:55 PM PDT
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Dodger outfielder Matt Kemp was the grand marshal of the annual event honoring Martin Luther King Jr. Janet Zappala reports from South Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Jan. 19, 2013.

Dodger outfielder Matt Kemp was the grand marshal of the annual event honoring Martin Luther King Jr. Janet Zappala reports from South Los Angeles for the NBC4 News at 6 p.m. on Jan. 19, 2013.

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Dodgers outfielder Matt Kemp served as grand marshal Saturday for the 28th Annual Kingdom Day Parade in South Los Angeles.

The parade in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. began near Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard and Western Avenue. The route continued west on MLK Jr. Boulevard before turning south onto Crenshaw Boulevard to Vernon Avenue.

Kemp, who is rehabilitating from an October shoulder injury, and former Dodgers were in a fire truck during the parade. Kemp's community contributions include a Dodgers Dreamfield dedication in Compton and Kemp's Kids, a program that hosts children at Dodgers games.

"I'm definitely part of his dream, and I'm living in this great world today. If it wasn't for him, I wouldn't be in this position," Kemp said of the civil rights leader honored Saturday.

City and county officials were part of the parade, which saw sunny and warm weather.

"This is a day of service, celebrating his birthday, and it's when the community comes together with city officials and we all look forward to where we need to be, and work to get there," said Los Angeles Fire Department Chief Brian Cummings.

The parade is usually scheduled for Martin Luther King Jr. Day, but was moved to a Saturday this year to avoid conflict with Monday's inauguration of President Barack Obama.

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