- Associated Press - Saturday, October 25, 2014

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - A portrait of Virginia’s first black chief justice will soon hang in the state Supreme Court building in Richmond.

The oil-on-canvas painting of Leroy Rountree Hassell (ha-SELL’) Sr. will be presented at a ceremony Tuesday in the courtroom where he presided for the last eight years of his 22 years as a member of Virginia’s highest court. Hassell died in in February 2011 at age 55.

The painting by Jean Garver was commissioned by the Virginia Bar Association. Since 1943, the organization has commissioned a portrait of each new justice and donated it to the court after the justice retires.

Hassell’s last public appearance in January 2011 was at a Virginia Bar Association dinner where he received the organization’s Distinguished Service Award.

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