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News in Brief: A summary of developments across Los
Angeles County | Community News File / Watts

MTA Renames Rail Station After Rights Leader Rosa Parks

April 24, 1998

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority board Thursday formally renamed the Imperial/Wilmington Metro Rail station in Watts for Rosa Parks, whose refusal to give up her seat on an Alabama bus in 1955 was a milestone in the civil rights movement.

"Rosa Parks is clearly a symbol of civil rights in the 20th century," said Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, chairman of the MTA board. "I hope MTA's passengers will recall her actions when passing through the Rosa Parks Station."

Parks' arrest for that incident in Montgomery touched off a wave of nonviolent civil rights demonstrations throughout the South and across the nation, and led to a 381-day boycott of Montgomery's city bus system.

"No one is more deserving of this honor," said MTA board member Yvonne Brathwaite Burke. "We all owe an enormous debt of gratitude to Rosa Parks for her resistance to racial injustice."

On March 20, an artist's rendering of a bronze plaque in Parks' honor was unveiled. It will be a permanent installation at the station.

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