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Rep. John Lewis on the Legacy of Eugene Patterson, former Editor and Columnist


Location: Washington, DC

Rep. John Lewis commented today on the death of Eugene Patterson, former Editor of the Atlanta Constitution and a Pulitzer Prize winning columnist for the paper during the height of the Civil Rights Movement. He held other distinguished positions at The Washington Post and United Press as well. He ended his career as CEO of the St. Petersburg Times and COB of The Poynter Institute. He died on Saturday. He was 89 years old. Rep. Lewis made this comment:

"Eugene Patterson, along with his mentor and friend Ralph McGill-- the beloved publisher of the Atlanta Constitution--played a major role in moving this nation toward the creation of a new South and a new America. He was an extraordinary journalist who used the power of his pen to articulate a vision of what the South could be. He hoped his words would change hearts and persuade minds to build a truly multiracial democracy in America, and they did. I sat on many panels with him to give meaning to the history we lived together. He was a great friend and a true humanitarian who used his tremendous talents to make a difference in our society. There are not many left like Eugene Patterson. He will be deeply missed."

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