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Abernathy's son will apply for pardons for father

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) - The son of the late civil rights leader, the Rev. Ralph David Abernathy, says he will apply for pardons for the many times his father was arrested while helping organize the Montgomery bus boycott and protests against segregation in Birmingham.

The son, Ralph David Abernathy III of Atlanta, told The Associated Press on Friday he will apply for the pardons for his father under a 2006 Alabama law setting up the machinery for granting the pardons to those arrested during civil rights protests.

Birmingham Mayor Larry Langford said this week he would use the law to pardon thousands, including Abernathy, arrested during the protests in Birmingham. Abernathy said Langford and legislators offered the pardons in a spirit of goodwill and the right thing would be to accept them.