Saturday was a special celebration for one of Mexico's favorite sons - Tyronn Lue, former NBA player and the associated head coach for the Cleveland Cavaliers basketball team.
This long awaited day to rename Walnut Street to Tyronn Lue Boulevard brought joy and tears to many of the people attending the event. It was standing room only in the community room of Garfield Center.
Prior to the ceremony, Lue visited with family, friends and supporters who attended the event.
"This means a lot to me," Lue said in an interview prior to the ceremony. "This is where it all started. It is a great feeling to be surrounded by the people who have supported me over the years."
In the audience were many members of the Lue family, who wanted to share the  moment with their, son, grandson, brother, and cousin. Two important women in Lue's life, his mother, Kim Lue, and his grandmother, Olivia George, both influential in molding him into the man he is today sat on the front row next to him.
Both women said they were very proud of Lue and were excited for him. "I am excited and a little anxious," Kim Lue said. "I am very proud of him and I feel very blessed." George also was happy to be there Saturday. George who helped raise Lue said she was also excited for him. "I am very, very, proud of him," George said. She also added he was her oldest grandson.
The ceremony began with Rita Jackson welcoming everyone. "Good morning and welcome to the dedication and unveiling ceremony of Tyronn Lue Boulevard," Jackson said in her opening statement. She explained where the street was and that on July 27 of this year, the Mexico City Council voted to rename Walnut Street to Tyronn Lue Boulevard.
"Normally city growth comes from housing, economic development, but today it is coming from an investment of an individual who has given so much back to the city of Mexico," Jackson said.
In his gracious speech, Lue thank everyone for their support including Jackson, Mayor Greg Miller, the city council, his family and supporters. He talked about being a leader and a role model, stating if you want to be a leader you need to be one all the time. "One thing I learned about being a leader is you can't pick and choose when you want to be a leader. If you want to be a leader you have to be one full time."
He talked about why he gives back to the community. He has given back in many ways whether it is providing the Fourth of July Fireworks, providing clothing for children and in many ways in many ways in which people are unware of, because he does not want the recognition. "It's not about the recognition, it is more from the heart," Lue said.
He touched on why Walnut Street was the chosen street to be renamed with his name on it. He said when it was decided to name the street after him, he had texts and people coming up to him asking why he didn't get a bigger street named after him. His reply to this is "To me it is not how big the street is, it is how big the honor is. There couldn't be a better street for me. This is where I grew up, this is where I played basketball everyday by myself and this is where I learned the hard work and dedication I have today." He also smiled and said when he was an 11-year-old kid he never thought that one day he would have a street named after him longer than Martin Luther King Drive.
Lue said he was a thumb sucking, rock throwing kid, who was bad at times, but got himself together to be the man he is today. This is mainly due to his family and the community of Mexico. He gave high praise to his mother for teaching him discipline and to his grandmother for teaching him never give up. He said he was taught family comes first and family is who makes the person.
In his closing remarks Lue had this to say to the city of Mexico, "Thank you for this honor, not because my name is on it, but I think of it as more of an appreciation to my family, friends and the people of Mexico who have supported me over the years and for that I want to thank you very much - and welcome to Tyronn Lue Boulevard."
Dan Erdel served as master of ceremonies for the celebration. "Today we are doing much more than changing the name of a street, if we were only changing the name of the street, the significance of this event would be short lived," Erdel said in his opening statement. "What we are doing today is much more important. By dedicating this street the Tyronn Lue Boulevard, we are honoring the dedication which Tyronn has to his family, his hometown, and most of all the boys and girls who look up to Tyronn as a role model," Erdel said.
Erdel said the renaming of the street signifies to everyone that the pathway to success in life is demonstrated by Lue's pathway way to hard work, respect, responsibility and service others. "That is why we are here today to show our respect to this man and his family."
Lue's sister, Shakea Latoi Lue, was the guest speaker. She also gave her appreciation for everyone who made the dedication possible. "People often ask me what is so special about Mexico, Missouri. I tell them it is a place where there is always a door open, where people invite you in for a meal or just good conversation and where people want the best for you."
She went on to tell the history of Lue's basketball career beginning with him playing by himself on the courts at Garfield Park, his high school, college and professional careers and his now coaching career.
Mayor Miller read a proclamation from the city of Mexico declaring Aug. 8, 2015 as Tyronn Lue Day. "In a little while we will officially change the name (Walnut Street) to Tyronn Lue Boulevard, but first I want to thank you again, especially for the children," the mayor said.
Comments were also made by Audrain County Presiding Commissioner Steve Hobbs; Superintendent of Schools Kevin Freeman and Chamber of Commerce President Penny Daugherty.
After the ceremony, the crowd moved outside where Lue unveiled the Tyronn Lue Boulevard sign. In his final comments he again thanked the community of Mexico. "You have been behind me all the way, all 11,000 of you," Lue said. He also thanked everyone for coming out Saturday for the celebration. Before the unveiling, a prayer was given by the Rev. Richard Mayson.