On Sept. 15, 1963, four little girls lost their lives when a bomb went off during Sunday morning services at the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Ala.
Fifty years later a Congressional gold medal will commemorate the lives of Addie Mae Collins, Denise McNair, Carole Robertson and Cynthia Wesley, who were among the worshipers in the predominately black congregation.
The Citizens Coinage Advisory Committee met by teleconference May 30 to discuss themes for the medal and provide input for the U.S. Mint sculptor/engraver.
“We had one of the more poignant, heartfelt meetings I’ve experienced,” said CCAC secretary Erik Jansen.
The CCAC suggested an obverse image that would memorialize the loss of four lives and a reverse that focuses on the resolve to bring change.
“A number of members focused in on a plaque in Birmingham which says, ‘May Men Learn to Replace Bitterness and Violence with Love and Understanding,” Jansen said.
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