Walnut Street Veteran Flags

Sewickley Black History Tour

Walnut Street Veteran Flags

Sewickley, Pennsylvania 15143, United States

Created By: Sweetwater Center for the Arts


Walnut Street Veteran Flags
400 Block of Walnut Street, Sewickley

The veteran banners gracing the 400 block of Walnut Street all depict African American members of the armed forces. These are William “Butch” Randolph, Army; Calvin William Massie, Army; Calvin L Massie, Air Force; Francis Ivan Smith, Army; James O. Smith, Army; Robert M. Rucker Sr., Army; Thomas E. Brannon Jr., Army; Walter Jacob Brannon, Army; James E. Lee Jr., Army; James E. Lee Sr., Army; Floyd L. Blair, Army; Floyd Blair III, Army; Michael P.D. Shannon, Army; and Edgar Grey, Air Force. The Black portraits that are hanging on the flags are a representation of the much greater number of Black members of the military in the village of Sewickley and the Quaker Valley. Other Black discharged service people’s flags hang around the village and are among those of the general population. But those on Walnut Street are hung as a testament to the patriotic spirit, and willingness to serve among the Black community in Sewickley Valley and the surrounding area.

Black History of the Time (Ongoing Service)
African Americans have been fighting for this country, and many making the ultimate sacrifice, since the American Revolution. Their stories are made famous through Black fighters such as the Buffalo Soldiers, the Harlem Hellfighters, and the Tuskegee Airmen, but all men and women of color who fought were heroes, often sacrificing for a country that did not offer them equality and respect. Through the years these soldiers have been recipients of all of the highest military honors including the Medal of Honor, the Distinguished Service Cross, the Navy Cross, the Air Force Cross, and the Purple Heart. The current highest-ranking officer who is African American is the Air Force Chief of Staff General Charles Q. Brown. The highest-ranking African Americans ever were former Secretary of State Colin Powell serving as the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and, of course, the former Commander in Chief President Barack Obama.


This point of interest is part of the tour: Sewickley Black History Tour


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