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LaGrange College to mark Juneteenth holiday

LaGrange College will be closed Friday in observance of Juneteenth, a holiday that marks the end of slavery in America.

On June 19, 1865, Union soldiers freed the remaining enslaved African Americans in what was once the Confederacy.

“This institution stands strong on its core values of civility, diversity, inclusion, service and excellence,” said President Dan McAlexander. “We believe it is important to take time to honor this milestone in our nation’s history.”

The college will make Juneteenth an annual holiday.

“We should have been honoring this day as a college holiday for the last century and a half,” McAlexander said. “We acknowledge and apologize for our failure to do so until current events awakened us to consider it, and we pledge to do better in the future.

“We hope our local governments, organizations and businesses will consider doing this in the future, and that the state and country will declare Juneteenth a state and national holiday in time for Juneteenth 2021.”