Former Virginia Gov. A. Linwood Holton Jr. dies at 98

Former Virginia Gov. A. Linwood Holton Jr. dies at 98
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Former Republican Virginia Gov. A. Linwood Holton Jr. has died, according to a tweet from his son-in-law Sen. Tim Kaine. He was 98.

“I mourn the loss of my father-in-law Linwood Holton. He was my friend and public service role model. His courageous efforts to end racial discrimination in Virginia—born out of deep religious conviction about the equality of all God’s children—made him a moral pillar for so many,” Kaine tweeted.

Current Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam remembered Holton as a “servant leader.”

“If you want to know what American strength looks like, look at the famous photographs of Governor Holton—smiling, as he walked his children to Richmond’s public schools during the tensest moments of desegregation. He faced down Virginia’s demons and enabled this Commonwealth to look ahead,” Northam said in a statement.

An anti-segregationist, Holton supported controversial busing laws and Kaine’s wife, Anne Holton, recalled years later what it was like when her father enrolled his children at traditionally Black schools in Richmond.

“As children of the governor, we could have easily continued attending our all-White schools in the West End,” she said. “Instead, we decided as a family to put our dad’s words into action.”

This story is breaking and will be updated.

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