Signaleers celebrate Black History

| March 7, 2014 | 0 Comments
Maj. Gabriella McKinney, of the 94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command, performs a praise dance during the Black History Month Observance.

Maj. Gabriella McKinney, of the 94th Army Air and Missile Defense Command, performs a praise dance during the Black History Month Observance.

Story and photos by
Maj. Avon Cornelius
311th Signal Command (Theater)

SCHOFIELD BARRACKS — Soldiers and civilians from the 516th Signal Brigade, 311th Sig. Command (Theater), and Team Equal Opportunity/Equal Employment Opportunity-Hawaii sponsored a Black History Month Observance at the main chapel, here, Feb. 26.

Black History Month is an annual observance in the U.S. paying homage to the citizens and events in African-American history.

The observance featured praise dance, a civil rights video and a moving vocal performance of the classic gospel hymn “His Eye is on the Sparrow.”

The keynote speaker was Sgt. Maj. Terry L. Sumerlin, 311th SC(T) Supply, who spoke on the unsung heroes of the civil rights movement, specifically the military leaders in the Benjamin Oliver Davis Sr. family.

Davis was the first African-American general officer in the U.S. Army. His son, Benjamin Oliver Davis Jr., went on to be become the first African-American general officer in the U.S. Air Force.

Sumerlin went on to discuss how Davis Jr. accomplished his goals through the trials he faced during his lifetime.

“Davis Jr. had to elevate his mind above what he saw,” said Sumerlin. “His natural eyesight could not see the vision of him becoming a four-star general, but he never gave up. He turned every perceived weakness into strength.”

Sgt. Maj. Terry L. Sumerlin, 311th SC (T), keynote speaker for the Black History Month observance, addresses participants from the 516th SB.

Sgt. Maj. Terry L. Sumerlin, 311th SC (T), keynote speaker for the Black History Month observance, addresses participants from the 516th SB.

The 516th SB command team, Col. Cleophus Thomas Jr. and Command Sgt. Maj. Allen Braswell, closed the event with remarks encouraging Soldiers and civilians to embrace cultural and racial diversity.

The mission of the EO/EEO program is to formulate, direct and sustain a comprehensive effort to maximize human potential to ensure fair treatment for military personnel, family members and civilians without regard to race, color, gender, religion or national origin, and provide an environment free of unlawful discrimination and offensive behavior.

Tags: ,

Category: News, Observances

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *