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Archive for the ‘Military’ Category

Navy Commissions U.S.S. Gravely, Newest Burke-Class Destroyer

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By Jane Anderson, Suite 101

The U.S. Navy commissioned its latest Arleigh Burke-class destroyer, the U.S.S. Gravely, on Nov. 20, 2010, in Wilmington, N.C. The ship honors Vice Admiral Samuel Lee Gravely Jr., the first African American to command a Navy warship.

About 4,000 sailors and guests attended the commissioning ceremony, held at the North Carolina State Ports facility. The audience included friends and family of Gravely himself, including veterans who served with him on the U.S.S. Taussig, which he commanded in combat. Gravely died in 2004.

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Written by Symphony

December 2, 2010 at 1:00 pm

Forgotten black veterans will be honored at Rye cemetery

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By Theresa Juva,

Community leaders plan to gather today in the African-American Cemetery for the first time to honor 22 black veterans buried there.

They also hope to generate interest in their effort to restore the Civil War-era burial ground, which is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and sits next to Greenwood Union Cemetery on North Street. The ceremony starts at 10 a.m.

“Many of them risked their lives for their country,” said Tom Kissner, second vice president of the Port Chester-Rye chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People. “The people sleeping here can’t take care of themselves. Someone alive has to protect the place.”

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Written by Symphony

November 30, 2010 at 3:23 pm

Posted in Honors, Military

African American World War II veterans share stories of war amidst segregation

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By Pamela McLoughlin, Journal Register Staff

Among the shrinking pool of World War II veterans still alive is a group with two war stories to tell.

One is about patriotism, dedication and becoming war heroes. The other is of doing the same thing, but in a segregated military where black troops fought in different units than white troops, with whites at the highest ranks, even though their blood spilled the same.

The Greater New Haven branch of the NAACP will honor black World War II veterans from 6 to 9 p.m. Thursday at a Veterans Day program at Criterion Cinemas, 86 Temple St. For tickets, call the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People office at 203-389-7275 or e-mail Tickets are $25

In addition, the NAACP will showcase an oral history project, featuring the veterans, created by Hillhouse High School.

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New exhibit opens at African-American military museum

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A new exhibit is focusing on the everyday lives of African-American soldiers who trained at Camp Shelby during the Second World War. The exhibit is called Archaeology of the World War Two African-American Barracks and it’s on display at Hattiesburg’s African-American Military History Museum.

The exhibit features about 100 artifacts excavated in the last 5 years from former barracks areas at Camp Shelby that were occupied by black soldiers in the 1940s. It also features photos of life at the post during the same period.

The exhibit runs through the month of October.

Written by Symphony

October 2, 2010 at 10:11 am

Local woman retires from USMC, 1 of 4 black women to be colonel

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By Julian Jeter-Davis, Dayton Daily News

The United States Marine Corps gave Col. Gail Jennings an opportunity to excel.

And excel she did.

Jennings is one of only four black women who have the rank of colonel in the history of the U.S. Marines. This summer, Colonel Jennings retired after 34 years of service to the country.

“My Aunt Allice was a big influence on me when I was a small child,” Jennings said. “She was very business minded, and I knew I wanted to be like that. She was quite an inspiration.”

As she finished high school, Jennings began to think about the military.

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Written by Symphony

September 5, 2010 at 1:39 pm

Posted in Military

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African American Civil War Museum Honors OB Civil War Vet David Carll

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by Dagmar Fors Karppi, Oyster Bay Enterprise Pilot

The African American Civil War Museum in Washington, D.C. is preparing to close its doors at its current location and presented its last civil war soldier – David Carll of Oyster Bay, on Aug. 7, 2010.

The presentation was made by Frank Carl of New York, NY and Gilbert McDonald of Odenton, MD., the descendants of David Carl of the 26th United States Colored Troops. The regiment was organized at Riker’s Island, New York Harbor, February 27, 1864. The regiment was deployed to South Carolina in April 1864. There it saw action in 1864 and 1865, according to the museum.

While doing research on the soldier, David Carll’s great-great-great grandson, Gil Frank McDonald, uncovered a 145-year-old “tin-type” photograph of the civil war soldier taken in 1865. The photo was not tucked away in a family member’s attic, but discovered in David Carll’s Civil War pension records at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

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Written by Symphony

August 27, 2010 at 5:52 pm

Pioneering African-American paratrooper fought WWII Japanese bombs on home soil

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By Jeff Wilkinson, The State

It was Aug. 6, 1945, and as fire raged below him, Lonnie Walker, a soft-spoken 23-year-old U.S. Army paratrooper from rural Louisiana, plunged into the high canopy of trees and jerked mightily as his parachute snagged on a limb.

Suspended, he tied one end of a 150-foot-long rope to his harness and dropped the rest of the length to the ground. Slipping out of his harness, he slid down the rope and began fighting the fire.

One of Walker’s comrades, a medic named Malvin L. Brown, was not so fortunate.

“He didn’t have enough rope to get down from his parachute,” said Walker, now 85, of Blythewood. “He fell and lost his life.”

Walker was a member of the first African-American paratrooper battalion, the Triple Nickles, 555th Parachute Infantry.

And on today’s 65th anniversary of V-J Day — Victory over Japan Day, Aug. 14, 1945 — the story of Walker and the Triple Nickles represents one of the least-known and most-bizarre campaigns of World War II. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Symphony

August 16, 2010 at 6:49 pm