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A Ripple of Hope

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Watch Sunday, January 18, 2015 at 4pm on WMHT TV.

A RIPPLE OF HOPE captures an extraordinary and uplifting event against the backdrop of one of the most volatile and memorable Presidential campaigns in U.S. history. On April 4, 1968, Robert F. Kennedy — a contender for the Democratic nomination for president — was en route to Indianapolis to make a campaign stop in a predominantly African-American neighborhood. In Memphis, Tenn. that same night, gunman James Earl Ray shot and mortally wounded the leader of the civil rights movement, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Upon hearing the tragic news, Kennedy made a crucial decision: risking his own life and defying city officials, he ventured into the inner city and addressed the grief-stricken crowd gathered in a park. He stood atop a shaky, flat-bed truck and delivered one of the great political speeches of the 20th century: a moving, extemporaneous plea for peace and reconciliation. By keeping his promise to speak, Kennedy helped Indianapolis avert the violence that swept the rest of the country. Within weeks of this speech, on June 6, 1968, Kennedy also would fall victim to an assassin's bullet. A RIPPLE OF HOPE tells the dramatic story of that historic night through archival film, photos and dramatic re-enactments, and by drawing on interviews with Kennedy aides and associates, including Kennedy press secretary Frank Mankiewicz, speechwriter Adam Walinsky, Congressman, civil rights activist John Lewis and others.

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