New sculpture honors Harvey Milk

November 25, 2008 9:38:24 PM PST
Thirty years ago this week there was a defining moment in San Francisco history. City Supervisor Harvey Milk and Mayor George Moscone were murdered by former Supervisor Dan White. On Tuesday, a building was dedicated to Milk's memory. Senator Dianne Feinstein gave a very rare, public reflection on the tragedy.

Senator Dianne Feinstein spoke about that day with heartfelt descriptions and the pain still there. It's understandable that she didn't want to talk about it, but she had so many requests from reporters Tuesday morning that she gathered them all together and opened up.

"I remember it actually as if it were yesterday," said Feinstein.

Dianne Feinstein was president of the Board of Supervisors 30 years ago. On November 27th she was in her office at City Hall.

"I saw him come in and I said, 'Dan can I talk to you?' and he went by. I heard the door close, and I heard the shots, and smelled the cordite," said Feinstein.

Feinstein says Dan White felt betrayed by Mayor George Moscone and by fellow supervisor, Harvey Milk.

"And what people don't know is that Dan White and Harvey Milk were friends. They would meet in the Castro I think it was every Thursday morning for coffee and Dan had asked Harvey for help," said Feinstein.

When Milk told Moscone not to reinstate Dan White to his supervisor's job; White sought revenge. Feinstein walked out onto the balcony at City Hall and told the world what had happened.

"I think in my face you saw the pain of the day, 30 years ago. Um, I still have a hard time returning to it and I'm not a masochist, I know what happened. I lived those times and you know I've tried to learn from them in terms of the kind of public servant I am and that's enough for me," said Feinstein.

Tuesday afternoon on Treasure Island, Speaker of The House Nancy Pelosi unveiled a bust of Harvey Milk and dedicated the renaming of the job corp. administration building, to honor the first openly gay man elected to public office in California.

Tuesday marks just the second time in 20 years Senator Feinstein has talked with ABC7 about what happened. It was riveting to hear her tell it.

Watch the whole raw Feinstein interview: Dianne Feinstein reflects on Moscone and Harvey Milk


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