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Reply #110: Some recent naval history firsts and facts [View All]

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Brewman_Jax Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Oct-26-07 04:53 PM
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110. Some recent naval history firsts and facts
Erroll Brown, RADM, USCG--1st black Coast Guard Flag Officer

Merle Smith, 1st black graduate of Coast Guard Academy in 1966.

Michael Healy, CAPT, US Cutter Service (predecessor service to US Coast Guard)--1st black ship's commanding officer in US Government service, commanded the Cutter BEAR from 1887-1895.

Wesley Brown, 1st graduate of the Naval Academy in 1949. The new Naval Academy gymnasium Wesley Brown Field House was named in his honor and broke ground in 2006.

J. Paul Reason, 1st black full Admiral (4-stars) in 1996 when appointed Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet.

Lillian Fishburne, 1st black female Navy Flag Officer.

Samuel Lee Gravely, Jr. (1922-2004) has many firsts in his Naval career. He was the first black Naval warship commanding officer, commanding destroyer USS Theodore E. Chandler (DD-717); first black commanding officer in combat commanding destroyer USS Taussig (DD-746) ; first black commanding officer of a heavy warship, commanding cruiser USS Jouett (CG-29). In addition to his noted advancement to Flag Officer (first black Rear (2-stars) and Vice (3-stars) Admiral), he was the first black fleet commanding officer, appointed Commander, US 3rd Fleet. The destroyer USS Gravely (DDG-107) was named in his honor.

George Thompson, CAPT, USN, 1st black commanding officer of the Navy Band in 2007.

Carl Brashear, BMCM (Master Chief Boatswain's Mate), 1st black Navy Master Diver in 1970 whose career was highlighted in the movie "Men of Honor" starring Cuba Gooding, Jr. as Brashear. Another incredible feat was that he was reinstated to full service as an amputee. He lost the lower portion of his left leg in an salvage operations accident in 1966.

Submitted by (former) _Argyle, LT, USN.
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