(LONDON) -- On the day marking America's declaration of independence from British rule, there was plenty of celebrating going on in London to honor the 40th president of the United States.
A statute of Ronald Reagan was unveiled Monday in front of the U.S. Embassy, part of Europe's commemoration of Reagan's 100th birthday.
The Fourth of July event was attended by Condoleezza Rice, who served as secretary of state under former President George W. Bush, and current British Foreign Secretary William Hague.
Effusive in his praise of the late president, Hague said, "Ronald Reagan is without question a great American hero; one of America’s finest sons, and a giant of 20th Century history. You may be sure that the people of London will take this statue to their hearts."
The $800,000 statue, commissioned by the Reagan Memorial Fund Trust, is also symbolic of the long alliance between the U.S. and Britain despite their differences 235 years ago.
Former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, a close Reagan friend, had to decline an invitation to the unveiling because of poor health.
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