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Statue of ‘Mayor for Life' Marion Barry Unveiled Outside Wilson Building

Marion Barry served four terms as D.C.'s mayor and 16 years on the D.C. Council before his death in 2014

An 8-foot statue of former D.C. Mayor Marion Barry was unveiled Saturday, giving the "Mayor for Life" a permanent legacy outside the seat of the city government.

The statue depicts Barry with his hand held high, waving.

Barry served four terms as the District's mayor and also served 16 years on the city council. He was serving on the D.C. Council when he died in November 2014.

D.C. radio personality Donnie Simpson presided over the the dedication ceremony outside the John A. Wilson Building on Pennsylvania Avenue, focusing on Barry's accomplishments and not his complicated legacy.

[NATL-DC]Photos: Marion Barry Through the Years

Mayor Muriel Bowser praised Barry for championing home rule, revitalizing neighborhoods from Chinatown to the H Street Corridor and launching programs that continue to serve young people, including the Summer Youth Employment Program.

"Sometime after Martin Luther King had a dream, and before President Obama gave us hope, it was Marion Barry that gave opportunity to Washington, D.C.," current Mayor Muriel Bowser said at the ceremony.

Dignitaries, politicians, and District residents pack D.C.’s Walter E. Washington Convention Center to say goodbye to four-term Mayor Marion Barry. News4’s Molette Green reports.

"He embodied the spirit of Washington," Bowser said. "Where you fight hard and speak up."

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