ARLINGTON, Va. — A 9-foot statue honoring former President Ronald Reagan has been unveiled at the Washington-area airport that bears his name, more than a decade after the facility was renamed for him.
His widow, Nancy, issued a statement saying she Is "thrilled"THAT the image will welcome visitors to the capital.
"Although I can’t be there today for the unveiling of Ronnie’s statue at Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, I’m thrilled to know that he will stand at the airport welcoming visitors to our nation’s capital. I’m grateful to the three secretaries of Transportation who are there today — Secretary Ray LaHood, Secretary Elizabeth Dole, and Secretary Jim Burnley. I’m especially appreciative for Elizabeth’s leadership making this special recognition possible during Ronnie’s centennial year."
The name change for Ronald Reagan National Airport took place in 1998, following the passage of congressional legislation that some opposed because they were not enamored of Reagan's legacy.
The 900-pound bronze statue, which cost about $900,000, was paid for with money raised from private donors by the Ronald Reagan Presidential Foundation and Library. The Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority also spent about $80,000 on site preparations.
Under the Reagan administration, control of the airport was transferred from the federal government to a regional board.
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