|Becton, Julius Wesley Jr.
Becton had a 36-year career in the Army. Born June 29,
1926 in Bryn Mawr, Pennsylvania, he joined the Army Air Corps
Enlisted Reserves in 1943. He entered active duty in July
of 1944. He graduated from OCS in 1945. He was
wounded twice in Korea and was a platoon commander of 3rd
Battalion, 9th Infantry Regiment in 1950. Every soldier in
that battalion was African-American. He was a World War
II, Korean War, and Vietnam veteran. He retired from the
Army in 1983. In 1960 Julius received a Bachelor of Science in mathematics
from Prairie View A&M University in Texas. In 1967 he
received a masters in economics from the University of Maryland
at College Park. In the 1990s he was chief executive
officer of the troubled District of Columbia Public Schools.
His public service in the federal government included
directorship of FEMA. He was president of Prairie View
University in 1989.
Cartwright, Roscoe Conklin
Born on May 27, 1919 in Kansas City, Kansas, Cartwright was
drafted into the Army in 1941 and attended OCS in 1942. He
was promoted to captain and served in Korea in an integrated
army. From 1951 to 1955 he was an instructor in the ROTC
program at West Virginia State College. He was a colonel
during the Vietnam War and was commander of the 108th Artillery
Group. He held government positions, and was Director of
the National Petroleum Council, the policy-making body of the
oil industry. Roscoe died in the crash of a jet liner at
Dulles on December 01, 1974.
Cherry, Fred Vann
Born on March 24, 1928 in Suffolk, Virginia, Cherry graduated
from Virginia Union University, Richmond. He entered the
Air Force in October of 1951. After flight training he
served in Korea, conducting 52 combat missions. He was the
43rd American and first African-American captured in the Vietnam
War. He endured three weeks of torture at the "Hanoi
Hilton". He retired from the Air Force after 30 years
service in 1981. In 1992 he founded Cherry Engineering
Support Services, the company that designed and developed
equipment for traffic control.
Daniel, James "Chappie" Jr.
Born February 11, 1920 in Pensacola, Florida, he joined the
Army Air Corps. During the Korean War he joined the 18th
Fighter Group leading the "Ferocious Four". He flew as
many as eight combat missions per day in the P-51 Mustang. He
received a Distinguished Flying Cross in Korea for action near
Namchonjom, Korea on October 15, 1960. He served in the
Vietnam War in Operation Bolo. On September 1, 1975,
Daniel became the first African-American four-star general.
He was named commander of the North American Air Defense Command
(NORAD). He retired from the Air Force on January 26, 1978
after 35 years service. On February 24, 1978 he suffered a
heart attack and died.
Davis, Benjamin Oliver Jr.
Born December 18, 1912 in Washington, DC, he died July 4,
2002 in Washington, DC. He was the fourth African-American
to graduate from West Point. His father was the first
African-American general in U.S. History. Benjamin Jr. was
an instructor of Tuskegee airmen. In 1953 he commanded the
51st Fighter Inceptor Wing at Suwon Air Base, South Korea.
He became a brigadier general and then major general. In
1965 he was chief of staff of the UN Command and US Forces in
Korea. He retired from the Air Force in 1970 and then
briefly worked as director of public safety for Cleveland, Ohio.
He also worked with the Department of Transportation to solve
the problem of commercial hijacking.
Petersen, Frank Emmanuel Jr.
Born on March 2, 1932 in Topeka, Kansas, he joined the US
Naval Reserve as seaman apprentice in June 1950. He was
designated marine aviator and 2nd Lieutenant on October 22,
1952. He was the first African-American to fly for the
Marines. In 1953 he was assigned to Fighter Attack
Squadron 212 "Devil Cats". He flew 64 combat missions and
earned six air medals and the Distinguished Flying Cross in
Korea. He was the first African-American to attend the
National War College in D.C., and then served in Vietnam.
He was the first African-American general in the Marine Corps.
He retired in 1988 after 38 years of service. He then
served on the board of directors of the National Aviation
Research and Education Foundation. Beginning in 1999, he
served two years as chair of the National Marrow Donor Program.
In 1999 he joined DuPont Aviation as a vice president.
Robinson, Hugh Cranville (post-Korean War)
He was the first African-American military aide to a
president of the USA (Lyndon Johnson. He graduated from
West Point in 1954 and was a platoon leader and company
commander in Korea from April 1955 to July 1956. During
the Vietnam War he was executive officer of the 45th Engineer
Group and then commander of the 39th Engineer Combat Battalion.
He was promoted to Brigadier General, being the Army Corps of
Engineers first African-American general. He retired from
the Army in 1983 and that same year he joined the Southland
Corporation as vice president. He supervised the
construction of Southland's corporate office complex in Dallas,
Texas. In 1989 he became chairman and chief executive
officer of the Tetra Group. In 2003 he held the same title
with the Cranville Construction and Development Company.
He was then Chief Executive Officer of Global Building Systems,
then chairman of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas.
Robinson, Roscoe Jr.
Born October 28, 1928 in St. Louis, Missouri, he graduated
from West Point in 1951. During the Korean War he served
with the 31st Infantry Regiment, 7th Infantry Division. In
1954 he was instructor in the airborne school at Ft. Benning.
He served during the Vietnam War, and then in August of 1982 he
became the first African-American four-star general in the Army.
He retired in October of 1983. He served on the Board of
Directors of the parent company of Northwest Airlines. He
died on July 22, 1993 of leukemia.
Simmons, Bettye Hill (post-Korean War)
Bettye Hill was born in San Antonio, Texas on
February 15, 1950. She entered the Army Nurse Corps after high
school and in June of 1971 she got her first assignment as a
clinical staff nurse at Brooke Army Medical Center, Fort Sam
Houston, Texas. In June of 1973 she became an instructor of
practical nursing at Brooke. In June of 1977 she became head
nurse at the 121st Evacuation Hospital in Korea. The next year
she became head nurse in the Medical Intensive Care Unit at Walter
Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C. During her
military career she met and married Charles W. Simmons, an Army
Reserve Officer. She became the first African-American nurse
to hold the dual role of deputy commander of the U.S. Army Medical
Department Center and School which had 30,000 students on and
off-site, and the 20th Chief of the Army Nurse Corps with 4,000
active personnel. Bettye Hill-Simmons retired from active duty
in 2000 and then became director of the Leadership Institute at
Hampton University in Hampton, Virginia.
Waller, Calvin Agustine Hoffman (post Korean-War)
Born December 17, 1937 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, he entered
the Army in August of 1959. In December 1963 he was made chief
of the Chemical, Biological, and Radiological Center in the
Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff, 7th Logisti Command, 8th
US Army in Korea. He retired from the Army on November 30, 1991
as one of the highest ranking African-Americans in the armed
forces. In July 1995 he joined the environmental contractor
Kaiser=Hill as Senior Vice President for Department of Energy
programs. Between 1995 and 2005, Haiser-Hill managed a cleanup
of radioactive hazardous materiaqls from Rocky Flats, a former
nuclear weapons plant outside of Denver. Waller died of a heart
attack on May 9, 1996 while visiting Washington, D.C.