School Honoring First Black Admiral Breaks Ground

Friday, April 27, 2007
Rear Adm. Victor Guillory, Mrs. Alma Gravely, family members and Prince William County Public School officials break ground for the Admiral Samuel L. Gravely Jr. Elementary School. The school is being named in honor of the Navy's first African American flag officer, vice admiral and fleet commander. U.S. Navy photo by Mr. Philip Molter

By Philip Molter, Naval District Washington Public Affairs

A pioneering naval officer was honored April 23 when family members and officials gathered in Haymarket, Va., to break ground for a school which will be named for him. The Admiral Samuel L. Gravely Jr. Elementary School will carry the name of the U.S. Navy’s first black flag officer, vice admiral and fleet commander.

Present at the site -- which was just a short distance from the Gravely residence -- were Alma Gravely, Rear Adm. Victor Guillory, Deputy Director of Surface Warfare, numerous Prince William County officials and other family and community members. “I know now and I’m very satisfied that this school being named after my husband was named because all of you did a lot of work getting here,” Alma Gravely said. “I just think it’s tremendous. I want to thank you very, very much for thinking of him. I have a notion he’s up there smiling down on us.” “I really do appreciate the opportunity to be here today,” said Guillory. “I had the opportunity to meet Admiral, then Captain, Gravely. And I was amazed how this individual commanded a presence. He certainly didn’t pick me out of the group, but he inspired me and gave me an opportunity to dream. I hope this school being named for him will go a long way to inspiring young hearts and minds.”

Gravely enlisted in the Navy Reserve in 1942. He then entered a program designed to select officers and was commissioned Dec. 14, 1944. His career spanned some 38 years, including command of several warships. He was selected as the first black flag officer while in command of USS Jouett (DLG 29). He later rose to vice admiral, and was assigned to command the U.S. 3rd Fleet, both also firsts. He retired in August 1980, and lived in the Haymarket area until his death in 2004. “Not only does (Gravely) represent a person who was very focused on education -- to graduate (high school) at 16 -- but when you look at year after year of his accomplishments, that he and his family were part of this community, says much,” said Dr. Steven Walts, Prince William County superintendent of schools. “As a role model for all children and an African American that achieved tremendous success -- we are always looking for role models that represent our entire community. I think that’s a very significant piece of that. What he accomplished in his life, in his position, what he represents for the African-American community -- I think all told, it’s just an excellent choice.” In addition to the school being named after the Gravely, the future USS Gravely (DDG 107) has also been named in his honor.

Maritime Reporter June 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

People & Company News

Diana Shipping Invests in Diana Containerships

Diana Shipping Inc., a global shipping company specializing in the ownership of dry bulk vessels, has announced that it has entered into an agreement to purchase

North Sea Atlantic Joins the Technip fleet

On Saturday July 26, 2014, a ceremony was held in Bergen to officially name the latest new subsea construction vessel to join the Technip fleet, the North Sea Atlantic.

Coast Guard Responds to Grounded Freighter in Lake St. Clair

The Coast Guard has responded Sunday to a 656-foot freighter that was hard aground in the downbound shipping channel of Lake St. Clair. Initial reports indicate

Navy

New Australian Navy Submarines to be Japan Built?

Australia should discuss building its next-generation fleet of submarines overseas, the Department of Defence said on Monday, a shift that could open the door to

Russian Navy Expansion Gathers Momentum

The Russian Navy celebrates its professional holiday by putting two new submarines into service and expects a new warship in the fall and several additional ships

Three Share in Navy US$96.8-M Twin-Ship Modernization Contract

The U.S. Department of Defense informs that AMSEC LLC; CDI Marine Co. LLC; and Q.E.D. Systems Inc., (all located in Virginia Beach, Virginia) are each being awarded a cost-plus-fixed-fee/cost-only,

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Contracts Naval Architecture Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.1507 sec (7 req/sec)