Martin Luther King, Jr. was shot while he stood on the balcony of room 306 at the Lorraine Hotel in Memphis, Tenn. He was in the city to support sanitation workers on strike for better pay and working conditions.
King and his associates, including Jesse Jackson, Ralph Abernathy and Ben Branch, were discussing strategy when the bullet struck. He spoke these words to Branch just before the bullet struck him: "Ben, make sure you play 'Take My Hand, Precious Lord' in the meeting tonight. Play it real pretty." King's assassin was James Earl Ray, an escaped convict. Though he escaped immediate arrest, police apprehended Ray after a two-month international manhunt.