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Beijing Olympic torch in San Francisco to be donated to Chinese museum

Xinhua | Updated: 2019-05-26 09:39
Torch-bearers Ed Lee, left, and Andrea Vincent, second left, are surrounded by security as they carry the Olympic flame along Van Ness Avenue during the Beijing Olympic torch relay, in San Francisco, USA, April 9, 2008. [Photo/IC]

SAN FRANCISCO -- A torch which was used by former San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee during the 2008 Olympic Torch Relay will be donated to the Beijing Olympic Museum this year, an organizer said Saturday.

The late mayor, who was then San Francisco City Administrator, joined the Olympic torch run on April 9, 2008, one day after the Olympic flame arrived in San Francisco from Paris of France.

San Francisco was the only North America stop for the Olympic torch relay, which ran from March 24 to Aug 8, 2008, prior to the 2008 Summer Olympics in Beijing, capital of China, with the theme of "One World, One Dream."

Sihong Zhao, chief of the Readers' Team of Immigrants' Path to the Gold Mountain (RTIPGM), a San Francisco group dedicated to collection of cultural relics for Chinese museums, told Xinhua that the torch was collected from Anita Lee, wife of the late San Francisco mayor who died suddenly on Dec 12, 2017, after nearly seven years in office as the first elected Chinese American mayor of the city.

The donation was part of the RTIPGM's efforts to support enriching the collections of the Beijing Olympic Museum and greet the upcoming 24th Olympic Winter Games to be hosted by Beijing in 2022, Zhao said.

In a letter of appreciation to Lee's wife, the Beijing Olympic Museum hailed her contribution to adding more collections to the facility and to the public welfare undertaking in China.

"The donated torch used by Mayor Lee is highly valuable and of great significance, which not only extols the Olympic spirit, but also demonstrates the success of overseas Chinese around the world that was built upon their wisdom and intelligence," the museum said in a statement.

Zhao disclosed that she will hold a press conference next week to unveil the details about the destinations of more cultural relics and donations collected overseas, with the Beijing Olympic Museum being one of the recipients.

The RTIPGM has collected and donated more than 5,000 pieces of cultural relics and various literatures related to China and Chinese history to many museums and research institutes back in China since 2006, Zhao said.

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