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Black Lives Matter protesters packed the northwest corner of Washington Avenue and Oak Street on Thursday, July 9, 2020.

One hundred people lined more than a block of sidewalk in downtown Iowa Falls on Thursday to declare that Black lives matter, and to demand justice and equality for all. The protest – organized by two former Iowa Falls residents and a local pastor – drew attention from counter protesters who staged a demonstration on the opposite corner, passersby who honked, yelled and squealed their tires in support or opposition, and police who sat in their cars at a distance, keeping watch over the activity.

The protest was organized by three people: Iowa Falls-Alden High School graduates Brooke Johnson and Jordan Liekweg, and the Rev. Kendy Miller, pastor at First Congregational United Church of Christ in Iowa Falls. Johnson and Liekweg, who moved away from Iowa after finishing high school in 2011, were back in town this summer and reached out to Miller to help plan a protest.

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Brooke Johnson, one of three people who organized a Black Lives Matter protest in downtown Iowa Falls on Thursday, July 9, 2020, displays a sign during the demonstration. Johnson graduated from Iowa Falls-Alden High School and currently lives in Los Angeles, Calif., where she has participated in other Black Lives Matter protests.

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Samantha Kluesner (left) and Maggie Ireland, both of whom grew up in Iowa Falls, participated in Thursday's Black Lives Matter protest. Ireland, the mother of a biracial child, said she's working to educate herself about Black experiences and the movement for justice and equality.

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Deja Collins said she experienced racism as one of only a few people of color at Iowa Falls-Alden High School, and she's dedicated to working to end racism and inequality. Collins participated in a Black Lives Matter protest in downtown Iowa Falls on Thursday, July 9, 2020.

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Skylar Warmbier carries a sign as she walks along the sidewalk on Oak Street in downtown Iowa Falls. Warmbier was one of around 100 people who participated in a Black Lives Matter protest on July 9, 2020.

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The Rev. Timothy Maybee leads a group of Black Lives Matter protesters in prayer during their demonstration in downtown Iowa Falls on Thursday, July 9, 2020.

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Protesters display signs along a sidewalk in downtown Iowa Falls during a Black Lives Matter protest on Thursday, July 9, 2020. About 100 people participated in the demonstration.

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