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New Airport Exhibit Honors Philadelphia Civil Rights Leaders Past and Present

(Philadelphia civil rights luminaries meet with Mayor Nutter in front of a new exhibit at Philadelphia International Airport.  Photo by Pat Loeb)

(Philadelphia civil rights luminaries meet with Mayor Nutter in front of a new exhibit at Philadelphia International Airport. Photo by Pat Loeb)

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By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia marked the 50th anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by unveiling a new exhibit today at Philadelphia International Airport.

The exhibit honors Philadelphians who contributed to the cause.

Following a brief ceremony and a countdown, a curtain was lowered to reveal 55 prints and photos of the individuals and events that mark Philadelphia’s contribution to the civil rights movement.

Airport chief Mark Gale notes that some of the portraits are historic.

“Our city has played a significant part in the ongoing quest for civil rights and equality for all,” Gale (second from right in photo) said today.

But along with such figures as African church founder Richard Allen are several people who are still active, such as Wei Chen (fourth from right), who battled violence against Asian students at South Philadelphia High School (see related story).

“This is hugely powerful for us because, when we look back at history, there was not a lot on the chapter about Asian Americans.  But now, in public, we’re being recognized. It’s an honor for me,” Chen said.

The exhibit will be up in Terminal A for one year.

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