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Vere Cornwall Bird, Antiguan politician who overcame childhood poverty and a lack of formal education to lead his country to independence from Great Britain; he first attained prominence as a labor leader, serving as president of the Antigua Trades and Labor Union from 1943 to 1967; he later served as Antigua's chief minister (1960-67) and premier (1967-71, 1976-81); in 1981, after Britain agreed to Antiguan independence, he became the first prime minister of the new country of Antigua and Barbuda, a position he held until 1994, when his son Lester succeeded him; although he was credited with bringing much-needed business to his poverty-stricken country after its independence, he was also criticized for numerous corruption scandals; he was, nevertheless, still revered by many Antiguans at the time of his death (b. Dec 7, 1909/10, St. John's, Antigua – d. June 28, 1999, St John's).

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Additional Photos by Zbigniew Kalinowski (fotka) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Note Writer [C: 575 W: 9 N: 1571] (6899)
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