Hundreds of people are expected to attend the dedication of a memorial in honor of five journalists killed in a mass shooting at the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland, including survivors and families of victims.
The Guardians of the First Amendment Memorial will honor the lives of Rebecca Smith, Wendi Winters, Gerald Fischman, Rob Hiaasen and John McNamara. Its dedication will take place Monday at 11 a.m. on the third anniversary of the attack.
The memorial is located in a prominent spot near near the historic downtown Annapolis waterfront, a school and park along Compromise Street to be seen by locals and tourists.
It was surrounded by fencing and mesh netting Sunday, preventing people from getting much more than a glimpse.
"It is very, very important that people understand that the press is not the enemy of the people," Carl Snowden, chair of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Committee of Anne Arundel County, said. "It shines a light. It brings truth. It enables us to be able to see the world as it is and make it what we want it to be."
Snowden explained that his committee, which was designed to honor King's legacy, was involved in the project because "you could not have had a civil rights movement had it not been for a free press in America. Nelson Mandela, who walked out of prison into the presidency, would not have been free had it not been for the free press."
The more than $500,000 project was funded through government dollars, organizations and private donors.
"It's very, very important that these men and women who lost their lives -- we not forget them and forget what they stood for," Snowden said.