Although Black History Month is reserved specifically for February, the celebration of our historic icons and pioneers never truly ends.
As one of the latest examples of that theory, Congressman Steve Cohen has just introduced a bill to rename the VA Medical Center in Memphis, Tennessee after late Tuskegee Airman fighter pilot Lt. Col. Luke J. Weathers Jr.
A Memphis native himself, Weathers Jr. was a decorated member of the U.S. Army’s first Black aviators, assisiting the famous Red Tails in escorting bombers over Italy in 1944 and shooting down several enemy airplanes. He went on to receive many honors, including the Distinguished Flying Cross and the Congressional Gold Medal, and would serve as an air traffic controller in his native Memphis before his death at 90 years old in 2011. He was later interred at the prestigious military burial ground Arlington National Cemetery on January 20, 2012, the same day George Lucas released his Tuskegee Airmen biopic Red Tails.
More from the office of Congressman Steve Cohen on this honorific proposal below:
“Naming our VA Medical Center for Colonel Weathers will inspire all of Memphis and everyone who visits the facility with his remarkable heroism and dedication to his country. I attended his moving interment at Arlington and heard more inspiring stories of his bravery and strength of character. I cannot think of a better man to honor with this permanent tribute than Colonel Weathers, and I look forward to seeing the measure soon becoming law.”
The bill so far has gotten approval from The Tennessee state chapters of the American Legion, the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) and the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW). Let’s hope they go all the way with this one in honor of a true Black American hero!
READ MORE STORIES ON BLACKAMERICAWEB.COM: