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Larry Grant mourners gather for LA funeral

August 25, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
Hundreds of mourners filled Christ Central Baptist Church on Saturday to celebrate Larry Grant's life.

"He's my stubborn fighter," said friend Tong Suk Chon. "But a good stubborn. He reached the people. He touched them and he prayed to a beautiful god."

The Carson-native dedicated 20 years to the United States Army and served in WWII and the Korean War.

He spent another 20 years as a banking executive in California and is considered a pioneer for African Americans in the industry.

But locally, he was better known as the face of the Kingdom Day Parade.

Grant helped found the annual celebration. It started off small, but 27 years later it's one of the largest parades commemorating Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in the country. Millions travel to Los Angeles for its festivities.

"If I mention the Martin Luther King Parade, everybody knows who Larry Grant is just for the 28 years of him doing it," said Grant's grandson Dashon Williams.

The war vet also received the prestigious Jefferson Award, given to individuals who make a difference in their community.

Grant definitely left his mark on Southern California. Just as the parade ensures Dr. King's Dream lives on, so does Grant's legacy for decades to come.

Grant died of a heart failure last week. He is survived by his two daughters, two sons, 10 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

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