Duke University removes Robert E. Lee statue from the school’s Duke Chapel entrance

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DURHAM, N.C. – Duke University has removed the Robert E. Lee statue from the school’s Duke Chapel entrance.

Duke University President Vincent E. Price made the announcement in an email sent to students, faculty, staff and alumni on Saturday morning.

“The statue will be preserved so that students can study Duke’s complex past and take part in a more inclusive future,” Price said in the email, which was also published on Duke’s website.

Price said he authorized the removal after consulting with students, faculty, staff and alumni and with the strong support of the Board of Trustees.

“I took this course of action to protect Duke Chapel, to ensure the vital safety of students and community members who worship there, and above all to express the deep and abiding values of our university,” Price said.

Last week, a protest against the removal of a Lee statue in Charlottesville, Virginia turned deadly when a man rammed his car into a group of counter-protesters, resulting in the death of 32-year-old Heather Heyer.