Apr. 27, 2020

Against All Odds: Vice Admiral Samuel Gravely

Can you just imagine the level of bigotry that Samuel Gravely faced while pursuing his goal of being a high ranking officer in the US Navy? Just remember this fact the US Navy was the last military branch to integrate it’s forces. The US Navy refused to recognize the fighting spirit of African Americans during the World Wars. The US Navy forced African Americans into the galleys for menial duty because of the color of their skins and no other reason. So when I recognize the anniversary of the appointment to Vice Admiral by the US Navy on April 28, 1971 of Samuel Gravely. I do so know that this man’s determination and desire to overcome the racism and bigotry must have been incredible. It took this nation how many years to recognize the leadership qualities of an African American in the United States Navy? The US Navy that refused to put sailor bars on Dorie Miller for his heroic actions during the Pearl Harbor attack. The US Navy that failed to promote any African American to the rank of Admiral during the Vietnam or Korean conflicts even though the loss of black lives was significant in both of these conflicts. The US Navy who refused to acknowledge the bigotry that existed in there ranks. Yes, I honor Vice Admiral Samuel Gravely today. Thank you sir for your service.