WASHINGTON — From the halls of Congress to the streets of Atlanta, Rep. John Lewis left his undeniable mark on the civil rights movement and U.S. politics.
Now, the next generation of Georgia politicians that Lewis inspired are working together to honor the late representative.
Georgia U.S. Senators Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock along with U.S. Senator Mitt Romney introduced a new legislation in memory of Lewis.
Lewis died of pancreatic cancer in July and would have turned 81 earlier this week.
[DOWNLOAD: Free WSB-TV News app for alerts as news breaks]
“Congressman Lewis has passed, but he lives on through his towering legacy, his powerful ideas, and his monumental accomplishments. One of the greatest figures in American history, John R. Lewis was a passionate and courageous champion of peace, justice, and human dignity whose selfless work advanced voting and civil rights for millions of Americans,” Ossoff said.
“The legacy Congressman John Lewis leaves is a point of eternal pride for the state of Georgia. He believed in the promise and the power of the vote, and the way people can right our country’s grave mistakes by strengthening our democracy,” Warnock said.
- Georgia congressman, civil rights icon, John Lewis, dead at 80
- Volunteers planting 300 trees in honor of late Rep. John Lewis on his 81st birthday
- Photos: John Lewis through the years
- Final Farewell: The world says goodbye to Civil Rights hero Rep. John Lewis
This is the first piece of legislation Ossoff has drafted since he was sworn into office last month. Ossoff started his political career as an intern for Lewis when he was in high school.
The resolution will recognize Lewis for “his towering achievements in the nonviolent struggle for civil rights.”
Rep. Nikema Williams, who is Lewis’ successor in Ga. 5th District, plans to introduce a similar resolution in the U.S. House.
“Congressman Lewis sacrificed so much and risked his life so people who look like me could enjoy the freedoms we often take for granted today,” Williams said. “He was a humanitarian, visionary leader, and a change agent whose fight for civil and voting rights has inspired people for generations.”
[SIGN UP: WSB-TV Daily Headlines Newsletter]