Bill and Hillary Clinton help dedicate renamed airport

May 3, 2013

Friday, May 3, 2013- Bill and Hillary Rodham Clinton were on hand Friday for the formal dedication of the Little Rock airport renamed last year in their honor.

Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport is the only such facility in the country named after a president and a first lady.

A ceremony, which features the Clintons, Gov. Mike Beebe, Little Rock Mayor Mark Stodola and more, drew hundreds of people to an airplane hangar adjacent to the airport grounds.

Those officials and others addressed the crowd first before Beebe introduced Hillary Clinton. She recounted flying into the airport for the first time and being met by her future husband, who gave her a tour of Arkansas.

She described that trip and other memories involving the airport that now bears her name, including serving as its commission attorney and flying out again years later for Bill Clinton’s inauguration in Washington, D.C.

“This is a very profoundly deep honor for me to be here for the naming of this airport that has played such a role in my life,” Hillary Clinton said shortly before introducing her husband.

Bill Clinton, too, described his memories of the airport, saying he remembers flying out of it as a college student entering a world of opportunity but with an intention to “come home again.”

“The airport is a metaphor,’ he said. “It lets us fly and it brings America and the world to us … The whole idea behind our ability to take flight from this airport is we’ll go and learn and be fascinated and create wealth and opportunity or be enriched in some other way. But we can always come home. We don’t have to give up our roots. We don’t have to give up our identity or who we are.”

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