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YORBA LINDA : Jehan Sadat Visits Statue of Husband

October 23, 1991|ANN CONWAY

During her first tour of the Richard Nixon Library & Birthplace in Yorba Linda on Tuesday, Jehan Sadat was escorted by Library Director John Taylor into a room where a statue of her late husband--Egyptian President Anwar Sadat--is on display.

"I hope you don't consider it presumptuous that we have a statue of your husband here," Taylor said.

Smiling, Sadat sidled up to the life-size statue, gently tracing its hands and back with her fingers.

"Yes, yes," she whispered, standing back for a better look. "But, he was a little bit taller."

Later, Sadat, who lives in Virginia and Egypt, said she was pleased. "I am very impressed and happy," she said. "It makes me very proud that he is still remembered by many good people."

Sadat's tour also included a stop in the library theater where she watched a movie of her husband chatting with Nixon beside the Great Pyramids of Giza during a 1974 visit, a viewing of the gold and turquoise "peace necklace" she and Sadat presented to First Lady Pat Nixon, and a private, sit-down luncheon in the Marriott Room sponsored by Taylor and hamburger mogul Carl N. Karcher.

Karcher wasted no time giving Sadat a coupon for a free Santa Fe Chicken Sandwich and CrissCut fries. "Both of those items are spicy," Karcher whispered. "And they (Egyptians) like spicy things; don't you think?"

Sadat spoke of Nixon with reverence: "He was the first American president to visit the Middle East. Egyptians appreciated it very much."

Of her hopes for peace in the Middle East, Sadat said she was optimistic. "I am praying to see peace so that what my husband started, gave his life for, will not be in vain."

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