90-Year-Old Travels To Washington, D.C. To Make Juneteenth A Holiday

FORT SMITH (KFSM) -- A 90-year-old Texas woman is passing through Fort Smith this week as she makes her way across the country to Washington, D.C. where she'll have a historic meeting with President Obama and Congress.

On Thursday (Sept. 22), Opal Lee will be in Fort Smith. She is walking 10 miles a day on her journey to the District of Columbia, with the goal of petitioning President Obama and Congress to make June 19 a national holiday to celebrate diversity.

Lee is the founder of the Community Food Bank in Fort Worth, Texas and she also leads the annual Fort Worth Juneteenth celebration, which remembers the end of slavery in the United States.

On Thursday, she will be joining Antioch volunteers in the Fort Smith area to lend a hand to distribute groceries to the elderly and disabled. Later, she'll meet with students from Montessori School. These students have been learning about food waste in America.

On Friday (Sept. 23), Lee will be helping the Fort Smith Mobile Pantry provide service to veterans.

Lee needs 100,000 signatures in order to talk to Congress about creating the national holiday. She needs the signatures by Sept. 27. To sign the petition, click here.