John Lewis's 7-year-old great nephew calls the civil rights icon 'my hero'

John Lewis's 7-year-old great nephew calls the civil rights icon 'my hero'
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Late Rep. John LewisJohn LewisTrump to pay respects to Ginsburg at Supreme Court Democrats urge Biden to resist filibuster, court-packing calls Rep. Bill Pascrell named chair of House oversight panel MORE's (D-Ga.) 7-year-old great nephew called the civil rights leader his hero at a memorial service in the longtime congressman's hometown of Troy, Ala., Saturday.

"Congressman John Lewis was my uncle and my hero. And it's up to us to keep his legacy alive," Jaxson Lewis Brewster, said during the congressman's memorial service at Troy University.

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Lewis, a key figure in the Civil Rights Movement, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in December of 2019. He passed away July 17 this year.

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Lewis was born to sharecroppers in Troy in 1940, and attended segregated schools. He became heavily involved in public activism and was inspired by Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. As part of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC), he helped to organize the 1963 March on Washington, and was the youngest person to give a speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial. 

The memorial for Lewis on Saturday kickstarted a six-day round of celebrations and memorials marking the legacy of the 17-term Georgia representative.

On Sunday, Lewis will be carried across the Edmund Pettus Bridge, commemorating the 1972 "Bloody Sunday" massacre, where he was severely beaten by police in Selma, Ala., prompting Congress to pass the Voting Rights Act later that year.

Speaker of the House Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiHoyer: House should vote on COVID-19 aid — with or without a bipartisan deal Ruth Bader Ginsburg lies in repose at Supreme Court McCarthy threatens motion to oust Pelosi if she moves forward with impeachment MORE (D-Calif.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellFEC flags McConnell campaign over suspected accounting errors Poll: 59 percent think president elected in November should name next Supreme Court justice Mark Kelly: Arizona Senate race winner should be sworn in 'promptly' MORE (R-Ky.) announced on Thursday that Lewis's body will lie in State in the U.S. Capitol Rotunda. The invitation-only ceremony will take place on Monday at 1:30 p.m., with the public able to pay their respects on Monday and Tuesday. 

However, Lewis's family has asked that those wishing to come to the capital not travel across the country, citing concerns about the coronavirus.