Quincy, Fl --May 20, 2012--
Every year on May 20th, Floridians celebrate 'Emancipation Day', to remember the freeing of the slaves in Florida.
"Freedom is everything," says Latrenda Gainous, who helped organize Quincy's 'Emancipation Day' celebration.
Latrenda Gainous has known freedom all her life. But more than 140 years ago, the thought of freedom for millions of Americans, like her ancestors was just a dream. Now, every May 20th, she and millions of others Floridians celebrate 'Emancipation Day', remembering the day that dream became a reality and all the slaves in Florida were finally set free.
"It means a lot to know that my ancestors and my forefathers, they risked a lot of things for me to have this day," says Gainous.
It's a lesson of sacrifice that she learned from her grandfather when he started Quincy's 'Emancipation Day' celebration down by the banks of the river more than 60 years ago.
"We should never forget where we came from; our struggles, our trials, that helps us be who we are,"says Gainous.
A lesson Gainous hopes parents teach their children, so they never forget where they came from and better appreciate where they're going.
President Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation back on January 1, 1863. But it wasn't read in Florida until two years later.