Alcatraz history gets an update in $3.5m renovation

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SAN FRANCISCO -- Darwin Coon is constantly reminded of his time on Alcatraz. The former bank robber can see the notorious island prison from just outside his front door in the city's North Beach district.

Coon remembers thinking he'd never get out alive, and was among the last inmates to leave when U.S. Attorney General Robert Kennedy closed the federal penitentiary in 1963. Years later, when a niece asked him to show her his old cell, he responded: "I never wanted to go back there."

Now 74, Coon finally did go back, and his recollections of daily life on "The Rock" are now part of an updated audio tour unveiled this month as part of a $3.5-million renovation aimed at making Alcatraz more accessible.

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