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Roger Williams to Donate Piano

May 18, 2001

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SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (AP) _ Roger Williams will donate his beloved Steinway piano to the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library.

But first he wants to play some tunes _ lots of them _ during a 12-hour marathon recital on June 12.

``We are honored to have one of this nation’s greatest artists not only bestow his most cherished piano but also make history with this record-breaking marathon,″ said Reagan Library director Duke Blackwood, who welcomed the gift recently.

Williams, 76, said he’s recorded many of his hits on the $100,000 concert grand piano.

``It’s my favorite piano. And I thought, it deserves a special home in honor of two of my favorite people, the president and Mrs. Reagan.″

Williams’ hits include ``Autumn Leaves,″ ``Born Free″ and ``Near You.″

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