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President Barack Obama has long made it known that he is a great admirer of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. During his first term in office, he added a sculpture of King’s to the Oval Office.

The bust made history during President Obama’s first term when it became the first image of an African American in any public space in the White House.

So it is only fitting that during his final Black History Month as President of the United States, Obama welcomed four members of King’s family to view the bust in the Oval Office for the first time.

Valerie Jarrett, senior advisor and assistant to the president for public engagement and intergovernmental affairs, tweeted a touching photo of the moment. The bust is juxtaposed beside an image of George Washington and beneath a photo of the outstretched arm of the Statue of Liberty.

The unveiling came on the same day that the president and First Lady Michelle Obama hosted the Black History Month reception at the White House, which was attended by PolitickerOne. It was a festive occasion marked by jokes and serious reflections about race in America. 

“We are so proud to honor this rich heritage,” Obama, flanked by the first lady, said at the reception. “Black History Month should not be treated as though it is somehow separate from the rest of American History. It is somehow just boiled down to a compilation of greatest hits, from the March on Washington or some of our sports heroes.”

“Preach,” an audience member shouted out.

“There are well-meaning attempts to do all around us in classrooms,” the president continued, “corporate ad campaigns, but we know that it should be more than a commemoration of people or events. It’s about the lived and shared experience of all African Americans.”

Watch the video below:

PHOTO CREDIT: Getty, Twitter 

SEE ALSO: Obama On Jokes: “We Know It Is Black History Month When…”

MLK’s Family Visits Oval Office To View Sculpture Of The Slain Civil Rights Icon, Sanders Accuses Clinton Of Using Obama To Draw Black Voters  was originally published on