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L.A. Mourns Late Mayor Tom Bradley

October 5, 1998

LOS ANGELES (AP) _ Hundreds of people filed past Tom Bradley’s casket Sunday, mourning the five-term mayor like a friend with an uncommon ability to understand common people.

``He was a self-made man, and he also made this city,″ said Matilda Wright, 66. ``He was an example.″

Bradley, among the first blacks elected mayor of a major U.S. city and the only black mayor in Los Angeles history, died Tuesday after suffering a heart attack. He was 80. He spent more than 50 years as a police officer, councilman and mayor.

His open casket stood in a lobby outside the Los Angeles Convention Center, flanked by a police honor guard and rose bouquets, including one arrangement formed into the city seal.

A steady stream of people, many who had never met Bradley, paid their respects.

People only have to look around to see Bradley’s impact on the city, said Jeff Urband, 49. ``The skyline is different. That’s because he invited businesses here,″ he said.

Rosalyn Rogers said she has always respected Bradley’s pledge to put more police on the streets of South Central Los Angeles, where she grew up.

``He was a mayor for all the people,″ said Ms. Rogers, 30. ``And he wasn’t afraid to work.″

She remembers seeing Bradley enter the Los Angeles Public Library while she and other employees were cleaning up after a devastating fire. ``He’d help repair books and restock books on the shelves,″ she said. ``He was in his white shirt, but he was working.″

Bradley was scheduled to be buried Monday.

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