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Flags lowered today for civil rights matriarch

Thu., April 29, 2010, 7:26 a.m.

Dorothy Height died last week in D.C.

OLYMPIA — In response to a proclamation from President Obama, Gov. Chris Gregoire has directed that flags at state facilities be lowered to half-staff today in memory of Dorothy Height, a matriarch of the civil rights movement.

She died last week at age 98 in Washington, D.C.

Hundreds of mourners are filing into the Washington National Cathedral to honor Height.

Obama will give the eulogy at the funeral this morning. Poet Maya Angelou will offer a reading, BeBe Winans will sing, and Camille Cosby will offer a tribute.

Attendees at the public funeral include Washington’s powerful and others who boarded trains at 3 a.m. to take part.

Some of the women arriving at the cathedral are wearing bright hats like Height used to wear.

Leaders from Congress will share the front row with the president. Several officials from Obama’s cabinet also will attend. Republican National Committee chairman Michael Steele is also expected to attend.

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