by Andrea Mitchell, NBC News correspondent
Michael Deaver’s friends came together at the National Cathedral today to celebrate what his good friend Jim Baker called “the miracle of a redeemed life.” There were a lot of them: Some still powerful, some once powerful and others newly empowered – several hundred former drug addicts whom Deaver had helped rescue from the streets of the nation’s capital.
Henry Pierce spoke for them, from the pulpit where presidents and potentates are usually memorialized, to an audience that included Vice President Dick Cheney, former presidential candidate George McGovern, Nancy Reagan, Washington wise man Bob Strauss, and an army of former Reagan cabinet secretaries and White House staff. Pierce is now the director of an organization Deaver helped keep going called Clean & Sober Streets. As Pierce tells it, 15 years ago he was a dope addict who wandered in early one morning. A man in a baseball cap handed him a donut, a cup of coffee and a willing ear. Mike Deaver, who at his death had been sober for more than two decades, was rescuing another soul. Hundreds of them in the congregation stood to be recognized.
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