Inaugural’s 'Hymn to Freedom' penned by Floridian

January 20, 2009 

PALM-AIRE — "Hymn to Freedom," a song born during the American Civil Rights struggle of the 1960s, will be among six performed by the combined San Francisco Boys and Girls choruses during ceremonies for Barack Obama’s inauguration today.

"It will be a very moving day for me. It's been a very moving week," said Palm-Aire resident Harriette Merolla, the lyricist who put words to the Oscar Peterson music. "It has brought back lots of memories," she said. "I am very honored."

Kelly Peterson, the widow of the late jazz piano legend, called Merolla to let her know "Hymn to Freedom" would be one of the songs performed at the inaugural ceremonies.

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