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Montgomery Councilmembers Join Tributes to Purple Line Activist Harry Sanders On Thursday, March 26, Councilmembers Leventhal, Riemer Will Attend Dedication of Memorial in Silver Spring
  • Release ID: 13-081
  • Release Date: 3/26/2013
  • Contact: Neil Greenberger 240-777-7939 or Delphine Harriston240-777-7931
  • From: Council Office
Harry Sanders, who before his death three years ago dedicated a significant portion of his time to trying to see the proposed 16-mile Purple Line become a reality, will again be honored by friends as a memorial will be dedicated to him at 10 a.m. on Thursday, March 28, at Woodside Urban Park in Silver Spring.

Members of the Montgomery County Council, who worked with Mr. Sanders as supporters of the Purple Line, this week joined in the ongoing tributes to the neighborhood activist. Councilmembers George Leventhal, Hans Riemer and Nancy Floreen will be among those attending Thursday’s ceremonies, which will be held at the corner of Spring Street and Georgia Avenue in downtown Silver Spring.

Friends and neighbors of Mr. Sanders, who lived on Noyes Lane in Silver Spring, started planning a permanent tribute to him shortly after his death in 2010. They worked with the Montgomery Parks Foundation to create the memorial, which will include a tree and plaque, to the person who was devoted to seeing creation of the east-west transit line that would connect the Bethesda Metrorail Station in Montgomery County to the New Carrollton Metrorail Station in Prince George’s County.

A proposal that would help fund transportation projects statewide, including the Purple Line, has received major support during the current session of the Maryland General Assembly.

“I can't wait for the day we finally break ground on the Purple Line. Although Harry lost his battle with cancer while we were all still waiting for that day to arrive, when it finally does, Harry's spirit and his memory will live in all of us.” said Councilmember Leventhal.

Councilmember Valerie Ervin, whose district includes downtown Silvers Spring, said: “What I admired most about Harry Sanders was that he understood that the success of the Purple Line was connected to organizing transit riders. They are among the many thousands of people who don’t own cars and who must ride transit everyday out of necessity, and Harry understood this.

“I learned so much from Harry. I learned that you must be passionate about an idea that you believe in and never let it go. I learned that true leadership is not loud or obnoxious. It is not mean or indignant—it is about building trust and community, and sometimes, you learn that it is the journey that is what is important.”

Councilmember Riemer said that the devotion Mr. Sanders had for the Purple Line has been continued by his family.

"Harry Sanders was an exemplary activist and community leader,” said Councilmember Riemer. “As an elected official, I am grateful that Harry dedicated his time and energy to making Montgomery County a better place to live. We are also getting closer and closer to reality for the Purple Line, which he played such a pivotal role in advancing and which his wife, Barbara, and son, Greg, continue to support through their superb advocacy."

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Last edited: 1/15/2016  

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