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It was a solemn remembrance of lives lost, a raucous march, a jubilant celebration and a call to action: More than a thousand people gathered in downtown Orlando on Friday to mark Juneteenth, one of a slew of events observing the holiday across Central Florida.

The holiday, which commemorates the end of slavery, has drawn renewed attention this year, coming amid ongoing nationwide protests against racial inequality and police brutality, which erupted in many American cities after the Minneapolis killing of George Floyd.

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