(Miami, FL) -- Georgia Congressman John Lewis is the man he is today because of Martin Luther King Jr. Lewis told a Miami crowd honoring role models on MLK Jr. Day that he doesn't know where he'd be today without the civil rights leader. The 76-year-old Lewis chronicled his own personal history from sharecropper's son, to civil rights activist to U.S. congressman, and pointed to peace and love is the key to the futures of the nation and world. He quoted his idol King as saying -- quote -- "hate is too heavy a burden to bear." He encouraged the young people in the audience to never give up, never give in, stand up and speak up when they see something's not right. He said that while progress in race relations has been made, the scars and stings of racism remain deeply embedded in American society.A civil rights icon in his own right, Lewis marched with King and was often a target of racial violence. He has been embroiled in an escalating feud with President-elect Donald Trump, but didn't mention Trump in his address today. Lewis has said he doesn't see Trump as a legitimate president because of Russian meddling in the U.S. election. Lewis is among about two-dozen Democratic lawmakers who have said they won't attend Friday's presidential inauguration ceremony.