John Lewis to lie in state at US Capitol next week

U.S.

FILE – This June 16, 2010 file photo, Rep. John Lewis, D-Ga., participates in a ceremony to unveil two plaques recognizing the contributions of enslaved African Americans in the construction of the United States Capitol on Capitol Hill in Washington. Lewis, who carried the struggle against racial discrimination from Southern battlegrounds of the 1960s to the halls of Congress, has died. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi confirmed his passing late Friday, July 17, 2020. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The late civil rights icon and Congressman John Lewis will lie in state at the U.S. Capitol next week.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell announced Thursday that the public will be allowed to pay their respects to the longtime Georgia congressman Monday night and all day Tuesday.

However, due to coronavirus precautions, Lewis will lie in state for public viewing at the top of the east front steps of the Capitol rather than in the Rotunda, and the public will file past on the East Plaza. Face masks will be required and social distancing will be enforced.

Lewis’ family has asked members of the public not to travel to Washington from across the country to pay their respects. Instead, they are suggesting people pay virtual tribute online using the hashtags #BelovedCommunity or #HumanDignity.

Lewis, 80, died last Friday, several months after he was diagnosed with advanced pancreatic cancer. He served 17 terms in the U.S. House.

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