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BB King, Norman Mineta, William Safire to Receive Presidential Medal of Freedom

The White House has announced the latest recipients of the nation's highest civil award.

They include a Nobel laureate, a legendary guitarist, an outspoken writer and an old-time baseball player.

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is scheduled to be given out at a White House ceremony on December 15.

The recipients will include Nobel laureate and scientist Joshua Lederberg, musician B.B. King, writer and commentator William Safire, and former Negro Leagues baseball great John "Buck" O'Neil.

Also to be honored are literacy advocate Ruth Johnson Colvin; the longest-serving U.S. Secretary of Transportation, Norman Mineta; historians Paul Johnson and David McCullough; former gulag prisoner Natan Sharansky; and the president of Xavier University in Louisiana, Norman Francis.