Jacquelyn Martin, File, Associated Press
FILE - In this Aug. 22, 2011, file photo, The Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial is seen in Washington. President Barack Obama is finally getting the chance to speak during a dedication ceremony for the Martin Luther King Jr. The dedication set for Sunday was originally supposed to take place in August but was postponed after Hurricane Irene swept through the Washington region.

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama is following through on his longtime plan to take his two daughters to see the new monument to Martin Luther King Jr.

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Two days before speaking at the monument's dedication, Obama, first lady Michelle Obama and daughters Malia and Sasha made a surprise visit to the new memorial to the slain civil rights leader on the National Mall.

Five years ago, then-Sen. Obama talked at a ground-breaking ceremony for the memorial about what it would be like to take his daughters to see it. He would be able to explain the importance of King and who he was. The country's first black president will be a featured speaker at Sunday's memorial dedication.