Posted Dec. 9, 2008 – Former Secretary of State Colin Powell delivered a $1 million gift to planners of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial on Monday and called on all Americans to help fund the National Mall project, reports The Associated Press.
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So far, the foundation building the memorial has raised $102 million of the $120 million needed to complete the project slated to begin construction next year at the Tidal Basin between the Lincoln and Jefferson memorials in Washington, D.C.
Powell delivered a $1 million check on behalf of UnitedHealth Group Inc., the Minnetonka, Minn.-based company that has paid him in the past to be a speaker at some of its functions. Powell said he has been involved with numerous Washington memorials, including the Vietnam Veterans Memorial because "it was my war."
Since leaving office as secretary of State, Powell has helped raise funds for the memorial to the slain civil rights leader. A spokeswoman said Powell personally donated $10,000 last year.
"MLK is a little different — it's not a president; it's not a war. It's a man who fought a war of peace and fought the second civil war," Powell told The Associated Press. "He changed America in a very significant way."