MARIANNA, Fla. (WJHG/WECP) - It's not a sight you see every day, a former NAACP leader marching in support of the Confederate flag. But that's exactly what happened Thursday in Marianna.
His name is H.K. Edgerton, and he's a former president of the Asheville chapter of the NAACP. To him, the Confederate flag is a symbol of history and honor. Edgerton marches to honor his ancestors who fought in the civil war as black soldiers for the Confederacy.
Proud of his Southern roots, Edgerton affectionately refers to the flag as the "Southern cross."
"This is an honorable symbol," said Edgerton. "These are some of the most courageous soldiers on God's planet that fought and died here in the south land of America"
The journey across Florida is called Edgerton's Southern Cross Revival March. It began in Tampa and will continue across the state of Florida. Along the way Edgerton hopes to change people's minds about the Confederate flag.
"Certainly lies have been told about it," he said. "I'm here to try to help straighten that out, because this is an honorable symbol, and these are great some of the most courageous soldiers on God's planet that fought and died around here in the south land of America."
Controversy surrounding the flag dominated national headlines last year. We asked Edgerton what he would say to those who see the flag as a symbol of oppression.
"You need to sit down and talk to me, to need to sit down and learn something about this flag," Edgerton said. "Because if that's the way you feel, you don't know anything about our history. You don't know anything about our flag. Your civil right's fight will come full circle if you pick up the Southern Cross."
Edgerton finished his walk at the historic Russ House where more than 20 people came to hear him speak.
Tomorrow he'll be in Pensacola before continuing on to Lake City and Gainesville.