Dedication of Arthur Ashe Boulevard by allie912

Dedication of Arthur Ashe Boulevard

I wouldn’t have missed it for the world. I loved seeing the mix of generations and races coming together in a spirit of celebration. I enjoyed seeing and hearing our senator, congressional leaders and the mayor of Richmond with keynote remarks from civil rights icon Congressman John Lewis of Georgia.
From today’s Richmond Times-Dispatch is a good overview of the event:
Thousands gathered Saturday morning to celebrate the formal renaming of Arthur Ashe Boulevard, an occasion leaders hailed as a long overdue step toward honoring Richmond’s native son and embracing African American history.
“This is truly a spectacular and momentous day,” said David Harris Jr., Ashe’s nephew. Harris led the successful push to rename the road formerly known as Boulevard for his uncle, who overcame prejudice to become a legend in a sport dominated by white athletes. Off the tennis court, Ashe was renowned for his humanitarian work and anti-Apartheid activism.
Between 2,000 and 3,000 people, including dozens of Ashe’s relatives, gathered on the lawn of the Virginia Museum of History & Culture to witness the unveiling of new Arthur Ashe Boulevard signs that will now mark the busy thoroughfare.
Local, state and Congressional officials, among them U.S. Rep. John Lewis, sung Ashe’s praises and marked the occasion as a significant milestone in Virginia’s commemoration of the 400th anniversary of the 1619 arrival of the first enslaved Africans.
“Think about Arthur Ashe, what he did, the contribution he made, coming out of this city, out of this state, out of this country,” said Lewis, the celebration’s keynote speaker.
Ashe was born in Richmond in 1943. He died at 49 in 1993 after contracting HIV through a blood transfusion during surgery. He is the only African American man to win Wimbledon, U.S. Open and Australian Open tennis titles.
In 1996, the city unveiled a bronze statue of Ashe at the intersection of Roseneath Road and Monument Avenue, making him the first – and to date, only – African American honored on Richmond’s most famous street.
In remarks Saturday, Richmond Mayor Levar Stoney said Ashe was “the only true champion” on the street that features prominent iconography of Confederate leaders from the Civil War. The newly named Arthur Ashe Boulevard intersects Monument Avenue in what Stoney said symbolized progress the city is making toward becoming a more inclusive and accepting community.
“By naming this boulevard after Arthur Ashe, we’re once again parting with our darker past and embracing our brighter future,” Stoney said.
a narrative and set of photos posted with respectful and caring words Allison. Arthur always struck me as a gentleman of the tennis court , a champion on and off the court
June 22nd, 2019  
I love your photos and the story from the Times-Dispatch. I would've loved to have been there! Arthur Ashe was an inspiration. Fav.
June 23rd, 2019  
June 23rd, 2019  
thank you for sharing this special day
June 23rd, 2019  
Thank you for posting these photos - it is good to see this great man being honoured. I recently posted some shots that my Aunty took the day Arthur Ashe won Wimbledon:
He was such an icon, and achieved so much on and off the tennis courts.
August 6th, 2019  
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