GM – FBF – Today’s American Tragedy should never be forgotten. In fact, when you can get to this city you need to go and see for yourself what a fellow human being would do to other human beings.Today in our History – September 15, 1963 – Four Black schoolgirls killed in Birmingham church bombing.On September 15, 1963, a bomb explodes during Sunday morning services in the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama, killing four young girls: Addie Mae Collins (14), Cynthia Wesley (14), Carole Robertson (14) and Carol Denise McNair (11).With its large African American congregation, the 16th Street Baptist Church served as a meeting place for civil rights leaders like Martin Luther King, Jr., who once called Birmingham a “symbol of hardcore resistance to integration.”Alabama’s governor, George Wallace, made preserving racial segregation one of the central goals of his administration, and Birmingham had one of the most violent and lawless chapters of the Ku Klux Klan.The church bombing was the third in Birmingham in 11 days after a federal order came down to integrate Alabama’s school system. Fifteen sticks of dynamite were planted in the church basement, underneath what turned out to be the girls’ restroom.The bomb detonated at 10:19 a.m., killing Cynthia Wesley, Carole Robertson and Addie Mae Collins—all 14 years old—and 11-year-old Denise McNair. Immediately after the blast, church members wandered dazed and bloodied, covered with white powder and broken stained glass, before starting to dig in the rubble to search for survivors. More than 20 other members of the congregation were injured in the blast.When thousands of Black protesters assembled at the crime scene, Wallace sent hundreds of police and state troopers to the area to break up the crowd. Two young Black men were killed that night, one by police and another by racist thugs. Meanwhile, public outrage over the bombing continued to grow, drawing international attention to Birmingham. At a funeral for three of the girls (one’s family preferred a separate, private service), King addressed more than 8,000 mourners.A well-known Klan member, Robert Chambliss, was charged with murder and with buying 122 sticks of dynamite. In October 1963, Chambliss was cleared of the murder charge and received a six-month jail sentence and a $100 fine for the dynamite.Although a subsequent FBI investigation identified three other men—Bobby Frank Cherry, Herman Cash and Thomas E. Blanton, Jr.—as having helped Chambliss commit the crime, it was later revealed that FBI chairman J. Edgar Hoover blocked their prosecution and shut down the investigation without filing charges in 1968. After Alabama Attorney General Bill Baxley reopened the case, Chambliss was convicted in 1977 and sentenced to life in prison.Efforts to prosecute the other three men believed responsible for the bombing continued for decades. Though Cash died in 1994, Cherry and Blanton were arrested and charged with four counts of murder in 2000. Blanton was convicted and sentenced to life in prison. Cherry’s trial was delayed after judges ruled he was mentally incompetent to stand trial. This decision was later reversed. On May 22, 2002, Cherry was convicted and sentenced to life, bringing a long-awaited victory to the friends and families of the four young victims. Research more about this great American tragedy and shear it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion is an American librarian and the 14th Librarian of Congress. She is the first woman and the first African American to hold the post. She is the first professional librarian appointed to the post in over 60 years. Born in Tallahassee, Florida, she began her career at the Chicago Public Library, eventually earning a doctorate in library science from the University of Chicago. From 1993 until 2016, she was the CEO of Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland, and president of the American Library Association (ALA) from 2003 to 2004.During her presidency, she was the leading voice of the ALA in speaking out against the newly passed United States Patriot Act. In 2020, she was elected to the American Philosophical Society.Today in our History – September Carla Diane Hayden (born August 10, 1952) was sworn in as the 14th Librarian of Congress.On September 14, 2016, Dr. Carla Hayden was sworn in by Chief Justice John G. Roberts as the 14th Librarian of Congress. The third professional librarian, the first woman and the first person of African American descent to hold the position, Dr. Hayden had served as the Chief Executive Officer of the Enoch Pratt Free Library system in Baltimore. Her work there earned her the Library Journal Librarian of the Year award, the first African American to receive the award. She has also served as president of the American Library AssociationDr. Hayden was nominated to serve as Librarian of Congress by President Barack Obama on February 24, 2016. During her confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Rules and Administration Dr. Hayden was introduced by Senators Barbara Mikulski and Benjamin Cardin as well as former Senator Paul Sarbanes of Maryland. After her appearance at the confirmation hearing the committee voted to move her nomination to the full Senate where it was approved on July 13, 2016.Dr. Hayden noted in an interview for the Library of Congress Magazine (LCM), that she remembers being surprised that there was a profession that was dedicated to books and reading and providing knowledge to people, and she thought it was an ideal career for her. When she started working at the Chicago Public Library she spoke about walking in to the store front library she was assigned to and seeing a young lady who she was to work with sitting on the floor having story time with children with autism. Hayden remembers thinking, “Wait a minute. This is a different type of profession. You’re bringing things right to people. I was hooked. Seeing what libraries could do in communities and how they could help people just opened my eyes.”In her speech after she was sworn in, she discussed the importance of harnessing the power of technology to provide access to the unparalleled resources at the Library of Congress. She noted her excitement in seeing the papers of Rosa Parks and knowing that this collection of papers had been digitized and was available to everyone.She also noted the importance of using the staff to build on the legacy of the Library and to make it accessible to everyone. In her remarks she said:“When I received the call from the White House about this opportunity, and was asked, ‘Will you serve?’ Without hesitation I said ‘yes’. But we cannot do it alone. I am calling on you, both who are here in person and those watching virtually, that to have a truly national library, an institution of opportunity for all: it is the responsibility of all.”She noted that her vision is to make sure that the people of the United States know that they have a national treasure that is part of their heritage and that everyone can find something in or created by the Library of Congress that relates to their lives or where they want to go.She wants to make the collections accessible and wants the Library to be seen as the “go to” place for information. Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion event was the Attica Prison Uprising, also known as the Attica Prison rebellion or Attica Prison riot, occurred at the Attica Correctional Facility in Attica, New York, United States, in 1971.Based upon prisoners’ demands for better living conditions and political rights, the uprising was one of the best-known and most significant flashpoints of the Prisoners’ Rights Movement.On September 13, 1971, two weeks after the killing of George Jackson at San Quentin State Prison, 1,281 of the Attica prison’s approximately 2,200 inmates rioted and took control of the prison, taking 42 staff hostage.During the following four days of negotiations, authorities agreed to most of the prisoners’ 27 demands, but would not agree to demands for complete amnesty from criminal prosecution for the prison takeover or for the removal of Attica’s superintendent. By the order of Governor Nelson Rockefeller, state police took back control of the prison. When the uprising was over, at least 43 people were dead, including ten correctional officers and civilian employees, and 33 inmates.Rockefeller, who refused to visit the prisoners during the rebellion, stated that the prisoners “carried out the cold-blood killings they had threatened from the outset,” despite only one of the officers and four inmates killed being attributed to the prisoners. New York Times writer Fred Ferretti said the rebellion concluded in “mass deaths that four days of taut negotiations had sought to avert”.As a result of the riot, a number of changes were made in the New York prison system to satisfy some of the prisoners’ demands, reduce tension in the system, and prevent such incidents in the future. As of 2021, Attica remains the most prominent prison riot to have occurred in the United StatesToday in our History – Attica Prison rebellion on September 9, 1971On Thursday, September 9, 1971, 5 Company lined up for roll-call. Hearing rumors that one of their companions was to remain in his cell after being isolated for an incident involving an assault on prison officer Tom Boyle after he was hit in the face with a full soup can by inmate William Ortiz, a small group of 5 Company inmates protested that they too would be locked up and began walking back towards their cells. The remainder of 5 Company continued towards breakfast. As the protesting group walked past the isolated inmate Ortiz, they freed him from his cell. They then rejoined the rest of 5 Company and proceeded on their way to breakfast. A short time later, when the command staff discovered what had occurred, they changed the usual scheduling of the prisoners, but did not tell prison officer Gordon Kelsey, the correctional officer in charge of leading 5 Company to the yard.Instead of going to the yard after breakfast as they usually did, the prisoners were led there to find a locked door, puzzling them and the correctional officer Kelsey. Complaints led to anger when more correctional officers led by Lt. Robert T. Curtiss arrived to lead the prisoners back to their cells. Officer Kelsey was assaulted and the riot began. The inmates quickly gained control of sections, D-yard, two tunnels, and the central control room, referred to as “Times Square”. Inmates took 42 officers and civilians hostage, and produced a list of grievances demanding their conditions be met before their surrender. As the demands were not met, negotiations broke down and the mood among the inmates deteriorated. It appeared as though Gov. Rockefeller remained opposed to the inmates’ demands, and they became restless. Defensive trenches had been dug, metal gates had been electrified, crude battlements were fashioned out of metal tables and dirt, gasoline was put in position to be lit in the event of conflict, and the “Times Square” prison command center was fortified.The inmates brought four corrections officers to the top of the command center and threatened to slit their throats. Reporters in helicopters circling the prison reported that the hostages in D yard were also being prepared for killing. Gov. Rockefeller had ordered that the prison be retaken that day if negotiations failed. Situation commander Oswald, seeing the danger to the hostages, ordered that the prison be retaken by force. Of the decision, he later said “On a much smaller scale, I think I have some feeling now of how Truman must have felt when he decided to drop the A-bomb.” At 9:46 a.m. on Monday, September 13, 1971, tear gas was dropped into the yard and New York State Police troopers opened fire non-stop for two minutes into the smoke. Among the weapons used by the troopers were shotguns, which led to the wounding and killing of hostages and inmates who were not resisting. Former prison officers were allowed to participate, a decision later called “inexcusable” by the commission established by Rockefeller to study the riot and the aftermath. By the time the facility was retaken, police had killed nine hostages and 29 inmates. A tenth hostage, Correctional Officer Harrison W. Whalen died on October 9, 1971, of gunshot wounds received during the assault. The final death toll from the uprising also includes the officer fatally injured at the start of the uprising and four inmates who were subjected to vigilante killings. Nine hostages died from gunfire by state troopers and soldiers. The New York State Special Commission on Attica wrote, “With the exception of Indian massacres in the late 19th century, the State Police assault which ended the four-day prison uprising was the bloodiest one-day encounter between Americans since the Civil War.” False media reports claimed that inmate hostage-takers slit the throats of many of their hostages, reports that contradicted official medical evidence. Newspaper headlines made statements such as “I Saw Slit Throats”, implying that prisoners had cut the hostages’ throats when the armed raid occurred. These reports set the stage for reprisals by troopers and prison officers. Inmates were made to strip and crawl through the mud and then some were made to run naked between lines of enraged officers, who beat the inmates. Several days after the uprising’s end, prison doctors reported evidence of more beatings. The Special Commission found that state officials failed to quickly refute those rumors and false reports. Within four years of the uprising, 62 inmates had been charged in 42 indictments with 1,289 separate counts. One state trooper was indicted for reckless endangerment. Inmates and families of inmates killed in the prison retaking sued the State of New York for civil rights violations by law enforcement officers during and after the retaking of Attica. After decades in the courts, the State of New York agreed in 2000 to pay $8 million ($12 million minus legal fees) to settle the case. The State of New York separately settled with families of the slain prison employees for $12 million in 2005. The Forgotten Victims of Attica have asked the State of New York to release state records of the uprising to the public. In 2013, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman said he would seek release of the entire 570-page Meyer Report, the state’s review of the uprising, submitted in 1975 by former State Supreme Court Justice Bernard S. Meyer.One volume was made public, but a State Supreme Court ordered in 1981 that the other two be sealed permanently. In May 2015, 46 pages of the report were released. The released pages contain accounts from witnesses and inmates describing torture, burning, and sexual abuse of inmates by prison authorities. Research more about this American Tragedy and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion was an American film and television actress, as well as a director, writer, and artist. Her career spanned more than half a century, from the early 1950s to 2010. Hamilton’s early film credits included the 1959 film noir Odds Against Tomorrow opposite Harry Belafonte and The Leech Woman in 1960. She was also one of the first African-American actors to appear on the soap opera Days of Our Lives and was the only African-American to appear in a speaking role on Leave It to Beaver. Hamilton portrayed, in an uncredited role, Helen Robinson in the 1962 film adaptation of To Kill a Mockingbird, based on Harper Lee’s novel of the same name. She was the film’s last surviving African-American adult cast member with a speaking role.Today in our History – September 12, 1932 – Kim Hamilton was born.Born in Los Angeles, California, Hamilton as a young woman initially wanted to be a model but said she could not find work in the fashion industry owing to her short stature and race. Instead, she enrolled in acting classes after seeing an advertisement in the Los Angeles Times and then enlisted the services of an agent. Hamilton made her professional acting debut in the 1950s television sitcom Amos ‘n’ Andy. She played the girlfriend of Andy (Spencer Williams) on the show for several episodes. She briefly moved to London to pursue acting.Hamilton was able to find some roles but returned to the United States after the British Actors’ Equity Association and the Secretary of State for Employment denied her a work permit, a practice commonly used against American actors at the time. Hamilton appeared in more than 60 television series and television films throughout her career. In 1960, she guest-starred in an episode of The Twilight Zone called “The Big Tall Wish.” In 1963 and 1964, she played a high-school librarian on two episodes of the popular series My Three Sons. She also became one of the first black actresses to appear on the soap opera Days of Our Lives.Other guest appearances included on the Adam-12 episode entitled “Hollywood Division (01/22/1974), and in the series The Thin Man, General Hospital, Sanford and Son, Good Times, The Jeffersons, In the Heat of the Night, All In The Family, and Law & Order. She portrayed Songi in “Final Mission” a 1990 episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation. Her last television credit was a 2008 episode of the ABC series Private Practice. Hamilton was also an artist, director, and writer. In her final credits, she was credited as Kim Rousseau. In December 2007, Hamilton was honored for her career achievements by Columbia University and the Harlem community at an event held at the Museum of the City of New York. Hamilton’s honor was part of series of Columbia University’s Big Read program, focusing on To Kill a Mockingbird through guest lectures, productions, and panel discussions. Kim Hamilton was married twice. Her first marriage, at age 18, was to Robert Henry Hamilton in 1951. They had two children but divorced a decade later. One of her children, her son Robert, predeceased her. She then dated German-born actor Werner Klemperer for more than two decades before they married in 1997.They remained together until Klemperer’s death on December 6, 2000. Hamilton in her later years divided her time between the East and West coasts, living at her home in Manhattan and at her other residence in her hometown of Los Angeles. In 2013, at age 81, she died of undisclosed causes while in Los Angeles. Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!+6
GM – FBF – Today as America still remembers this day at the effects on our society. I wanted to look at two people who were working on the United airplane that was diverted over Shanksville. PA where it crashed. Today in our History – September 11. 2001 – the heroes of United Airlines Flight 93.Flight attendant Lyles, 33, resided in Fort Myers, Florida. Prior to being a flight attendant she spent six years with the Fort Pierce, Florida Police Department rising in rank from patrol officer to detective. She achieved her lifelong dream of being a flight attendant on October 11, 2000. She was married in May of 2000 to police officer Lorne Lyles. Prior to her marriage she spent several years as a single mother. During that time she worked two or three jobs and was proud of the fact that she never had to take welfare. She often helped with police programs for children during her free time. She and her husband were the parents of sons Jerome Smith, Javon Castrillo, Justin Lyles and Jordan Lyles. During the hijacking of Flight 93, Mrs. Lyles used her cell phone to phone her husband twice. She told him of the hijacking and also how much she loved him and their boys. According to her husband , she remained calm as she prayed to see her husband’s face again and then “beseeched God to forgive and welcome her home – along with everyone else on the plane.”Age: 49Hometowns: Oakland, California/Linden, New JerseyOccupation: Flight Attendant, United AirlinesWanda Anita Green was a flight attendant with United Airlines for 29 years, fulfilling a dream of flying and seeing the world. According to her mother, Green was one of the first African American flight attendants with United Airlines. Green was a dedicated mother of two children, a church deacon, and active in her community of Linden, New Jersey. She held a degree from Rockland Community College, earned a real estate license, and hoped to open her own real estate office when she retired from flying. Green planned to visit her family in Oakland, California on her layover after the September 11 flight to the West Coast.Never forget! Make It A Champion Day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion was an American politician who served as the U.S. Representative for Ohio’s 11th congressional district from 1999 until her death in 2008. A member of the Democratic Party, her district encompassed most of Downtown and Eastern Cleveland and many of the eastern suburbs in Cuyahoga County, including Euclid, Cleveland Heights and Shaker Heights. She was the first African American woman to be elected to Congress from Ohio.On December 19, 2006, Tubbs Jones was named Chairwoman of the House Committee on Standards of Official Conduct for the 110th Congress. She was also a member of the House Ways and Means Committee. On August 19, 2008, Tubbs Jones was found unconscious in her car, having suffered a cerebral hemorrhage caused by a burst aneurysm. She was taken to an East Cleveland hospital, where she died the next day.Today in our History – September 10, 1949 – Stephanie Tubbs Jones was born.Stephanie Tubbs Jones won election to the United States House of Representatives in 1998, becoming the first African-American woman to represent Ohio in Congress. Nine years later she became one of the first African-American women to chair a standing congressional committee—the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, commonly known as the Ethics Committee.1 In the House, she focused on a range of policies important to her district, including home ownership, women’s health, and voting rights. “All my life I had wanted to help others, and I had been active in helping others,” she said. “I was always interested in service.”Stephanie Tubbs Jones was born Stephanie Tubbs in Cleveland, Ohio, on September 10, 1949, to Mary Tubbs, a factory worker and cook, and Andrew Tubbs, an airline skycap. Raised in Cleveland’s Glenville neighborhood as the youngest of three daughters, she graduated from Collinwood High. At Case Western Reserve University, Jones founded the African American Students Association and, in 1971, graduated with a degree in sociology and a minor in psychology. She completed her law degree at Case Western University Law School in 1974. Jones then served as the assistant general counsel and the equal opportunity administrator of the northeast Ohio regional sewer district.3 She married Mervyn Jones and raised a son, Mervyn.Jones eventually became an assistant Cuyahoga County prosecutor and trial attorney for the Cleveland district equal employment opportunity commission. When she and several friends worked on a successful political campaign in 1979, the group began promoting Jones for public office. Noting a lack of people of color on the bench, Jones ran for a local judgeship and won election to the Cleveland municipal court. Ohio Governor Richard Celeste then appointed Jones to the Cuyahoga County court of common pleas, where she served from 1983 to 1991. In 1992 she was elected the Cuyahoga County prosecutor, making her the state’s first African-American prosecutor and the only Black woman prosecutor in a major urban area in the country.When Cleveland’s Representative of 30 years, Louis Stokes, retired in 1998, Jones entered the Democratic primary to succeed him. She ran on her nearly two decades in public office in Cuyahoga County and on her well-established connection with voters in the district.5 After capturing 51 percent of the vote in the primary against a handful of other candidates, she dominated the general election with 80 percent.6 Jones faced no serious challenges in her four re-election bids; she usually won with 75 percent or more of the vote, and ran unopposed in 2004.When Jones took her seat in the 106th Congress (1999–2001), she received assignments on the Banking and Financial Services Committee (later renamed Financial Services) and the Small Business Committee. In the 107th Congress (2001–2003), she picked up a third assignment to the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, which oversees House ethics guidelines for Members and staff. In the 108th Congress (2003–2005), Jones left the Financial Services and Small Business Committees to become the first African-American woman to hold a seat on the prestigious Ways and Means Committee, which writes and oversees America’s tax laws.Jones’s Ohio district encompassed some of Cleveland’s wealthiest suburbs as well as poor neighborhoods in the city. On Capitol Hill, she worked to control predatory mortgages and lending practices. As chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Housing Task Force, she facilitated a panel on home ownership at the Congressional Black Caucus Weekend in 2000.In the 107th Congress, she introduced the Predatory Mortgage Lending Practice Reduction Act to abolish certain fees and prevent lenders from targeting low-income and minority communities with subprime mortgages, which carried high interest rates. She routinely re-introduced the bill, and although she did not live to see it, Congress eventually passed legislation amid the financial crisis in 2009 that curbed subprime lending.For four straight Congresses—the 107th through 110th Congresses (2001–2009)—Jones joined Maryland Senator Barbara A. Mikulski in introducing the Uterine Fibroids Research and Education Act. The proposal included $10 million over four years to fund research by the National Institutes of Health and increase public awareness. Jones focused on the issue because African-American women are statistically more likely to be affected than other women and the condition was relatively unknown. “Women deserve better,” she said. Jones introduced the bill four times, and although it never became law, she felt more people learned about the disease through her legislative efforts.Additionally, Jones focused on fire safety on college campuses. Citing a number of deadly fires in the previous decade, Jones introduced the Campus Fire Prevention Act in the 107th Congress to create a grant program for sprinkler systems in student housing. She re-introduced it in the following three Congresses. The bill would have provided colleges and universities $100 million a year for four years and directed 10 percent of the funds to “historically Black colleges and universities, Hispanic-serving institutions, and Tribally Controlled Colleges and Universities,” as well as another 10 percent to fraternity and sorority housing. In 2009 Ohio Representative Marcia L. Fudge introduced the Honorable Stephanie Tubbs Jones College Fire Prevention Act—the same bill Jones introduced—which passed the House in May 2010.In the lead up to the 2004 presidential election, the Democratic Party chose Jones to serve as co-chair for the Democratic National Committee. She told a local newspaper she was chosen for the role because of her judicial background and Ohio’s status as a swing state, but mainly because she was “not afraid to speak out” for what she felt was right.After George W. Bush won re-election in 2004, Jones suspected irregular voting procedures in Ohio had swayed the state’s results. Supported by findings from a forum held by the Democratic members of the House Judiciary Committee, Jones sought a Senate colleague to make a formal objection during the ceremonial electoral vote count before a Joint Session of Congress. California Senator Barbara Boxer agreed and the pair challenged the count on January 6, 2005—only the second time since the modern counting practice was established in 1887. Jones knew it was unlikely to change the outcome of the election, but in a news conference said, “I raised these objections because I am convinced that we as a body must conduct a formal and legitimate debate about election irregularities. I raise these objections to debate the process and protect the true will of the people.” Both chambers debated the issue and ultimately voted to uphold the results: 74 to 1 in the Senate and 267 to 31 in the House.The following month, Jones joined Senators Boxer and Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York in introducing the Count Every Vote Act which proposed wide-ranging electoral reform. The bill would have declared Election Day a national holiday, made the distribution of misleading election information a federal crime, and required a paper ballot back-up for every electronic vote to be used in the event of a recount.In the 110th Congress (2007–2009), Speaker Nancy Pelosi of California named Jones chair of the Committee on Standards of Official Conduct, more commonly known as the Ethics Committee, despite criticisms that Jones had used campaign funds for personal purchases and had taken free flights from special interest groups. With Jones as chair, the Ethics Committee initiated guidance for Members who earmarked federal funding—line items in appropriations bills for specific projects—to avoid conflict of interest issues, and for Members who flew on private planes. The committee also began a yearly requirement for all House staff to complete ethics training.Representative Jones died suddenly of a brain aneurysm on August 20, 2008. At the news of her passing, then Senator and Democratic presidential nominee Barack Obama stated, “It wasn’t enough for her just to break barriers in her own life. She was also determined to bring opportunity to all those who had been overlooked and left behind.”27 Jones was succeeded by Marcia Fudge—one of her former aides and the mayor of Warrensville Heights, Ohio—in a special election on November 18, 2008. Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion was an American businessman, investor and banker. One of the first wealthy African American entrepreneurs in America, he is credited with being the first African American man to own banks in the United States, specifically owning and controlling white banks in the state of Texas despite Jim Crow laws. Today in our History – September 9, 1999 – Bernard S. Garrett Sr. died.Garrett was born in Willis, Texas. He completed 11th grade in Houston, Texas and married his first wife, Eunice. They had a son, Bernard Garrett Jr. He and Eunice separated and divorced in 1959. He met Linda Marie Guillemette in 1960 and they married in 1962. By 1963, Bernard and Linda had amassed an empire of wealth in real estate all over California, buying the prestigious Bankers Building in 1963 in downtown, Los Angeles. They joined in Martin Luther King Jr.’s August 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom.Garrett started and ran a cleaning business in Texas. In 1945, the family moved to California where Garrett started another cleaning business and a wastepaper collection business. When Garrett wanted to buy an apartment building in a white neighborhood in Los Angeles, he worked out a deal with the owner, Mr. Barker, who, along with a bank, loaned Garrett money to renovate the apartment units. Garrett was successful in renting the units to black residents and in paying back the loans. He and Barker formed a partnership investing in real estate.In 1954, Garrett was worth $1.5 million. He proposed a deal to Joseph B. Morris that they purchase real estate together. Morris was a graduate of UCLA and a Black businessman who had once owned two nightclubs. Joe and his wife Cora became friends with Linda and Bernard Sr. Together they bought the Bankers Building, the tallest building in Los Angeles. They succeeded by having Linda, whose skin was very fair, and sometimes other white faces, pretend to be the faces of their empire, appearing to run their operations while, in fact, Garrett and Morris were the owners and actual operators of the properties.Morris and Garrett went on to purchase multiple banks and savings & loans, in Texas. They acquired their first bank in Texas in 1964 going on to buy an additional four banks and savings & loans. A racist Democratic power base eventually found a way to stop Bernard and Linda’s growing banking control of white banks in Texas. Senator John L. McClellan from Arkansas brought Garrett before the Senate Investigations Committee in 1965. Bernard Sr and Linda hired lawyers Melvin Belli—who had defended Jack Ruby— and Joe Tonahill to defend Bernard. Bernard Sr was sentenced in 1967 to a stay at Terminal Island Federal Facility in Long Beach, California, shortly after his second daughter Sheila, was born.Bernard Sr and Linda built another real estate empire with an eye on becoming early investors in the newly independent country of The Bahamas. By 1974, they moved their family of six children to the Bahamas to run a large boat marina they bought, while awaiting bank charter approval to own banks in the Bahamas.Bernard Sr and Linda hoped to own banks in the Bahamas, until they encountered a banking charter denial because of his prior racist conviction in Texas. They eventually moved back to the United States.Bernard Garret and Linda had six children . The couple divorced in 1977–78. Garett went on to meet and marry, Kathy Ussery. They had 2 sons. Garrett died in 1999.Garrett and Morris’s story was adapted into the 2019 critically acclaimed film The Banker.In Garrett’s lifetime, he built a real estate and banking portfolio worth tens of millions of dollars, which equates to well over $100 million in today’s dollarsIn 2020, the family established The Bernard Garrett Sr Foundation, a public foundation focused on financial literacy and opportunity for African Americans. Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM- FBF – Today’s American Champion was an American actress, singer, and dancer. She is the first African-American film star to be nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actress, which was for her performance in Carmen Jones (1954). She performed as a vocalist in venues such as the Cotton Club and the Apollo Theater. During her early career, she performed as a part of The Wonder Children, later The Dandridge Sisters, and appeared in a succession of films, usually in uncredited roles.In 1959, she was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Porgy and Bess. She is the subject of the 1999 HBO biographical film, Introducing Dorothy Dandridge. She has been recognized with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Dandridge was married and divorced twice, first to dancer Harold Nicholas (the father of her daughter, Harolyn Suzanne) and then to hotel owner Jack Denison. Dandridge died under mysterious circumstances at age 42. Today in our History – September 8, 1965 – Dorothy Jean Dandridge died.Actress and singer Dorothy Dandridge found early success in show business by performing with her sister, leading to her first appearances in film. Following her star turn in the 1954 musical Carmen Jones, she became the first African American to be nominated for a Best Actress Academy Award. Dandridge found it difficult to replicate that success, and her final years were marred by personal and professional problems, until her death at age 42 in 1965.Dorothy Jean Dandridge was born on November 9, 1922, in Cleveland, Ohio. Her mother, actress Ruby Dandridge, left her husband while she was pregnant, and as such Dorothy never knew her father. She later suffered at the hands of her mother’s girlfriend, Geneva Williams, a disciplinarian with a cruel side.Pushed into show business at a young age by her mother, Dandridge performed with her sister, Vivian, as a song-and-dance team called the Wonder Children. The girls performed throughout the South, playing Black churches and other places.Around 1930, Dandridge moved to Los Angeles, California, with her family. A few years later she found success with her new musical group, the Dandridge Sisters, which included sister Vivian and their friend Etta Jones. The group landed gigs at the famous Cotton Club in Harlem and performed with top acts such as the Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra and Cab Calloway. As an African American singer, Dandridge confronted early on the segregation and racism of the entertainment industry. She may have been allowed on stage, but in some venues, she couldn’t eat in the restaurant or use certain facilities because of the color of her skin.As a teenager, Dandridge began earning small roles in a number of films. She and her sister appeared in the Marx Brothers classic A Day at the Races (1937), as well as Going Places (1938), with Louis Armstrong. On her own, she danced with Harold Nicholas of the dancing Nicholas Brothers in the 1941 Sonja Henie musical Sun Valley Serenade. The duo’s tap-dancing routine was cut from the version of the film shown in the South.Dandridge married Harold Nicholas in 1942, but their union proved to be anything but a happy one. Nicholas reportedly liked to chase other women, and Dandridge virtually retired from performing during this time. Adding to the strain, after Dandridge gave birth to daughter Harolyn in 1943, they discovered that the girl had brain damage. Seeking to find a cure, Dandridge had Harolyn receive expensive private care for many years.After her divorce in 1951, Dandridge returned to the nightclub circuit, this time as a successful solo singer. After a stint at the Mocambo club in Hollywood with Desi Arnaz’s band and a sellout 14-week engagement at La Vie en Rose, she became an international star, performing at glamorous venues in London, Rio de Janeiro, San Francisco and New York. She won her first starring film role in 1953’s Bright Road, playing an earnest and dedicated young schoolteacher opposite Harry Belafonte.Her next role, as the eponymous lead in Carmen Jones (1954), a film adaptation of Bizet’s opera Carmen that also co-starred Belafonte, catapulted her to the heights of stardom. With her sultry looks and flirtatious style, Dandridge became the first African American to earn an Academy Award nomination for Best Actress. Although she lost out to Grace Kelly (The Country Girl), Dandridge seemed well on her way to achieving the level of fame and superstardom enjoyed by white contemporaries like Marilyn Monroe and Ava Gardner. In 1955, she was featured on the cover of Life magazine and was treated like visiting royalty at that year’s Cannes Film Festival.However, in the years that followed her success with Carmen Jones, Dandridge had trouble finding film roles that suited her talents. She wanted strong leading roles but found her opportunities limited because of her race. According to The New York Times, Dandridge once said, “If I were Betty Grable, I could capture the world.” Belafonte also addressed this issue, noting that his former co-star “was the right person in the right place at the wrong time.”With Hollywood filmmakers unable to create a suitable role for the light-skinned Dandridge, they soon reverted to subtly prejudiced visions of interracial romance. She appeared in several poorly received racially and sexually charged dramas, including Island in the Sun (1957), also starring Belafonte and Joan Fontaine, and Tamango (1958), in which she plays the mistress of the captain of an enslaved ship.Among the missed opportunities from this period, Dandridge turned down the supporting role of Tuptim in The King and I (1956), because she refused to play an enslaved person. It was rumored that she would play Billie Holliday in a film version of the jazz singer’s autobiography, Lady Sings the Blues, but it never panned out. Dandridge did appear in one more role worthy of her talents, opposite Sidney Poitier in the Academy Award-winning Porgy and Bess (1959).While making Carmen Jones, Dandridge became involved in an affair with the film’s director, Otto Preminger, who also directed Porgy and Bess. Their interracial romance, as well as Dandridge’s relationships with other white lovers, was frowned upon, particularly by other African American members of the Hollywood filmmaking community. On the rebound, Dandridge married her second husband, Jack Denison, in 1959, though that proved to be another troubled relationship. Denison was abusive and mishandled her money, with Dandridge losing much of her savings to an investment in her husband’s failed restaurant. They split in 1962.As her film career and marriage floundered, Dandridge began drinking heavily and taking antidepressants. The threat of bankruptcy and nagging problems with the IRS forced her to resume her nightclub career, but she found only a fraction of her former success. Relegated to second-rate lounges and stage productions, Dandridge’s financial situation grew increasingly worse. By 1963, she could no longer afford to pay for her daughter’s 24-hour medical care, and Harolyn was placed in a state institution. Dandridge soon suffered a nervous breakdown.On September 8, 1965, Dandridge was found dead in her Hollywood home at age 42. Initially reported to be the result of an embolism, additional findings pointed to an overdose of an antidepressant. Dandridge had little more than $2 in her bank account at the time of her death.Dandridge’s unique and tragic story became the subject of renewed interest in the late 1990s, beginning in 1997 with the release of a biography, Dorothy Dandridge, by Donald Bogle, and a two-week retrospective at New York City’s Film Forum. In 2000, film star Halle Berry won Golden Globe and Emmy awards for her portrayal of the groundbreaking actress in the acclaimed TV movie, Introducing Dorothy Dandridge. Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion is an American singer, best known for the disco era hits “I Will Survive” (1978), “Never Can Say Goodbye” (1974), “Let Me Know (I Have a Right)” (1979), and “I Am What I Am” (1983).Today in our History – September 7, 1943 – Gloria Gayno; was born.Gaynor was born Gloria Fowles in Newark, New Jersey, to Daniel Fowles and Queenie Mae Proctor. Her grandmother lived nearby and was involved in her upbringing. “There was always music in our house”, Gaynor wrote in her autobiography I Will Survive. She enjoyed listening to the radio, and to records by Nat King Cole and Sarah Vaughan. Her father played the ukulele and guitar and sang professionally in nightclubs with a group called Step ‘n’ Fetchit. Gloria grew up a tomboy; she had five brothers and one sister. Her brothers sang gospel and formed a quartet with a friend.Gaynor was not allowed to sing with the all-male group, nor was her younger brother Arthur, as Gloria was a girl and he was too young. Arthur later acted as a tour manager for Gaynor. The family was relatively poor, but Gaynor recalls the house being filled with laughter and happiness, and the dinner table being open to neighborhood friends. They moved to a housing project in 1960, where Gaynor attended South Side High School; she graduated in 1961.”All through my young life I wanted to sing, although nobody in my family knew it”, Gaynor wrote in her autobiography. Gaynor began singing in a night club in Newark, where she was recommended to a local band by a neighbor. After several years of performing in local clubs and along the East Coast, Gaynor began her recording career in 1971 at Columbia Records.Gaynor was a singer with the Soul Satisfiers, a jazz/R&B music band, in the 1960s. She recorded “She’ll Be Sorry/Let Me Go Baby” (for the first time as Gloria Gaynor) in 1965, for Johnny Nash’s Jocida label. Her first real success came in 1973 when she was signed to Columbia Records by Clive Davis. The fruit of that was the release of the flop single “Honey Bee”.Moving on to MGM Records she finally hit with the album Never Can Say Goodbye. The first side of the album consisted of three songs (“Honey Bee”, “Never Can Say Goodbye”, and “Reach Out, I’ll Be There”), with no break between the songs.This 19-minute dance marathon proved to be enormously popular, especially at dance clubs. All three songs were released as singles via radio edits and all of them became hits. The album was instrumental in introducing disco music to the public, “Never Can Say Goodbye” becoming the first song to top Billboard magazine’s dance chart.It was also a hit on the mainstream Pop Charts, peaking at No. 9, and on the R&B Charts, reaching No. 34 (the original version by The Jackson 5 had been a No. 2 hit on the Hot 100 in 1971). It also marked her first significant chart success internationally, making it into the Top 5 in Australia, Canada, Germany and the UK. The song would go on to be certified silver by the British Phonographic Industry, and subsequently gold in the US.Capitalizing on the success of her first album, Gaynor quickly released her follow-up, Experience Gloria Gaynor, later that same year. Some of her lesser-known singles, due to lack of recurrent airplay — including “Honey Bee” (1974), “Casanova Brown” (1975), and “Let’s Make A Deal” (1976), as well as her cover of The Four Tops’ “Reach Out, I’ll Be There” — became hits in nightclubs and reached the Top 5 on Billboard’s disco charts.Many charted on the Hot 100 and R&B charts as well, with songs like “(If You Want It) Do It Yourself” — a No. 1 disco hit — peaking at No. 98 on the Pop Charts and No. 24 on the R&B Charts. Gaynor’s cover of “How High the Moon” topped the US Dance Charts, and made the lower parts of both the pop and R&B charts, as well as achieving some international chart success. After her 1976 album I’ve Got You, Gaynor shifted from her hit production team to work with other producers. She has recorded some 16 albums since, including one in England, one in Germany, and two in Italy.In the next few years, Gaynor released two albums Glorious and Gloria Gaynor’s Park Avenue Sound, but would only enjoy a few more moderate hits. However, in late 1978, with the release of her album Love Tracks, she climbed the pop charts again with her smash hit single “I Will Survive”. The lyrics of this song are written from the point of view of a woman, recently dumped, telling her former lover that she can cope without him and does not want anything more to do with him.The song has become something of an anthem of female emancipation. Originally, “I Will Survive” was a B-side when Polydor Records released it in late 1978. The A-side, a song called “Substitute”, then a recent worldwide hit for South African girl-group Clout, was considered more “radio friendly”. Boston disco radio DJ Jack King turned the record over and recalls being stunned by what he heard: “I couldn’t believe they were burying this monster hit on the B-side”, stated King.”I played it and played it and my listeners went nuts!”. The massive audience response forced the record company to flip the songs, so that subsequent copies of the single listed the more popular song on the A-side. King was honored at New York’s “Disco Masters Awards Show” for three consecutive years (1979–1981) in recognition of his relentless push of the song. The song received a Grammy Award for Best Disco Recording in 1980, the only year that award was given (Gloria had to wait another 40 years for her second Grammy, in the Grammy Award for Best Roots Gospel Album category).It is ranked No. 492 on Rolling Stone magazine’s list of “The 500 Greatest Songs of All Time”, and ranked at No. 97 on Billboard magazine’s “All-Time Hot 100”. In 2000, the song was ranked No. 1 in VH1’s list of the “100 Greatest Dance Songs of All Time” and remains there to this day.As a disco number, the song was unique for its time by virtue of Gaynor’s having no background singers or lush production. And, unlike her first disco hits, the track was not pitched up to make it faster and to render Gaynor’s recorded voice in a higher register than that in which she actually sang.Most disco hits at the time were heavily produced, with multiple voices, orchestrations, overdubs, and adjustments to pitch and speed. “I Will Survive” had a much more spare and “clean” sound. Had it been originally planned and released as an A-side, it would almost certainly have undergone a substantially more heavy-handed remix. In late 1979, she released the album I Have a Right which contained her next disco hit, “Let Me Know (I Have a Right)”, which featured Doc Severinsen of The Tonight Show fame, playing a trumpet solo. Gaynor also recorded a disco song called “Love Is Just a Heartbeat Away” in 1979 for the cult vampire film Nocturna: Granddaughter of Dracula, which featured a number of disco songs.In 1980 and again in 1981, Gaynor released two disco albums which were virtually ignored in the United States due to the backlash against disco, which began late in 1979. The album’s singles barely registered on Urban contemporary radio, where disco music remained popular. In 1982, having looked into a wide variety of faiths and religious movements, she became a Christian and began to distance herself from a past she considered to be sinful. That same year, she released an album of mid-tempo R&B and pop-style songs entitled Gloria Gaynor.Gaynor would achieve her final success in the 1980s with the release of her album I Am Gloria Gaynor in 1984. This was mainly due to the song “I Am What I Am”, which became a hit at dance clubs, and then on the Club Play chart in late 1983/early 1984. “I Am What I Am” became a gay anthem and made Gaynor a gay icon. Her 1986 album, The Power of Gloria Gaynor, was almost entirely composed of cover versions of other songs that were popular at the time.Gaynor’s career received a revitalizing spark in the early and mid 1990s with the worldwide disco revival movement. During the late 1990s, she dabbled in acting for a while, guest starring on The Wayans Bros, That ’70s Show (singing “I Will Survive”), and Ally McBeal, before doing a limited engagement performance in Broadway’s Smokey Joe’s Cafe. In 2001, Gaynor performed “I Will Survive” at the 30th Anniversary concert for Michael Jackson.Gaynor returned to the recording studio in 2002, releasing her first album in over 15 years, I Wish You Love. The two singles released from the album, “Just Keep Thinking About You” and “I Never Knew”, both topped Billboard’s Hot Dance Music/Club Play. Both singles also secured moderate to heavy dance format radio airplay. The latter song also charted No. 30 on Billboard’s Adult Contemporary chart. In 2004, Gaynor re-released her 1997 album The Answer (also released under the title What a Life) as a follow up to her successful album I Wish You Love. The album includes her club hit “Oh, What a Life”.In late 2002, Gaynor appeared with R&B stars on the “Rhythm, Love, and Soul” edition of the PBS series American Soundtrack. Her performance of the disco hit “I Will Survive” and new single “I Never Knew” was included on the accompanying live album that was released in 2004.On September 19, 2005, Gaynor was honored twice when she and her music were inducted into the Dance Music Hall of Fame, in the “Artist” category, along with fellow disco artists Chic and Sylvester. Her classic anthem “I Will Survive” was inducted under the “Records” category. In January 2008, the American Diabetes Association named Gaynor the Honorary Spokesperson of the 2008 “NYC Step Out to Fight Diabetes Walk”.More television appearances followed in the late 2000s with 2009 appearances on The John Kerwin Show, The Wendy Williams Show, and The View to promote the 30th anniversary of “I Will Survive”. In 2010, she appeared on Last Comic Standing and The Tonight Show.Forty years after its release, Gaynor continues to ride the success of “I Will Survive”, touring the country and the world over and performing her signature song on dozens of TV shows. A few successful remixes of the song during the 1990s and 2000s along with new versions of the song by Lonnie Gordon, Diana Ross, Chantay Savage, rock group Cake and others, as well as constant recurrent airplay on nearly all soft AC and rhythmic format radio stations have helped to keep the song in the mainstream.Gaynor said of her biggest hit in a 2012 interview: “It feels great to have such a song like that because I get kids five and six years old telling me they like the song, and then people seventy-five and eighty. It’s quite an honor.” The song was revived yet again in 2015 for the film The Martian, where it is used at the end as the credits roll.Gaynor released a contemporary Christian album in late 2013. On May 16, 2015, Gaynor was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Music by Dowling College. In 2017, she made a cameo appearance as a flight attendant in a Capital One commercial, while Samuel L. Jackson, Charles Barkley, and Spike Lee sang “I Will Survive”.In 2016, “I Will Survive” was selected for induction into the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry.On May 6, 2017, Gaynor performed with her band at the Library of Congress’ celebration of disco music at Bibliodiscotheque, a disco dance party in the Great Hall of the Thomas Jefferson Building.Due to the devastation wreaked by Hurricane Harvey on the state of Texas in August 2017, Gaynor rewrote the lyrics to “I Will Survive”, changing the title to “Texas Will Survive”, and posted a video of herself singing the song on Twitter on August 30, 2017.In January 2020, she won her second Grammy Award in her career, 40 years after her first, for her roots gospel album Testimony. Gaynor was married to her manager Linwood Simon in 1979. The couple divorced in 2005. She has no children. According to Gaynor, while she always wanted children, her ex-husband never desired any.Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!
GM – FBF – Today’s American Champion was an American civil servant and politician. He was chief executive of the District of Columbia from 1967 to 1979, serving as the first and only Mayor-Commissioner from 1967 to 1974 and as the first home-rule mayor of the District of Columbia from 1975 to 1979.After a career in public housing in Washington, DC and New York City, he was appointed as mayor-commissioner of the District of Columbia in 1967.Congress had passed a law granting home rule to the capital, while reserving some authorities. Washington won the first mayoral election in 1974, and served from 1975 until 1979.Today in our History – September 6, 1967 – Walter Edward Washington (April 15, 1915 – October 27, 2003.President Lyndon B. Johnson named Walter E. Washington commissioner and “unofficial” mayor of Washington, D.C.Washington was the great-grandson of enslaved Americans. He was born in Dawson, Georgia. His family moved North in the Great Migration, and Washington was raised in Jamestown, New York, attending public schools. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Howard University and a law degree from Howard University School of Law. He was a member of Omega Psi Phi fraternity.Washington married Bennetta Bullock, an educator. They had one daughter together, Bennetta Jules-Rosette, who became a sociologist. His wife Bennetta Washington became a director of the Women’s Job Corps, and First Lady of the District of Columbia when he was mayor. She died in 1991. After graduating from Howard in 1948, Washington was hired as a supervisor for D.C.’s Alley Dwelling Authority. He worked for the authority until 1961, when he was appointed by President John F. Kennedy as the Executive Director of the National Capital Housing Authority. This was the housing department of the District of Columbia, which was then administered by Congress. In 1966 Washington moved to New York City to head the much larger Housing Authority there in the administration of Mayor John Lindsay. In 1967, President Lyndon Johnson used his reorganization power under Reorganization Plan No. 3 of 1967 to replace the three-commissioner government that had run the capital since 1871 under congressional supervision. Johnson implemented a more modern government headed by a single commissioner, assistant commissioner, and a nine-member city council, all appointed by the president. Johnson appointed Washington Commissioner, which by this time had been informally retitled as “Mayor-Commissioner.” (Power brokers such as Katharine Graham, publisher of the Washington Post, had supported white lawyer Edward Bennett Williams.) Washington was the first African-American mayor of a major American city, and one of three blacks in 1967 chosen to lead major cities. Richard Hatcher of Gary, Indiana and Carl Stokes of Cleveland were elected that year.Washington inherited a city that was torn by racial divisions, and also had to deal with conservative congressional hostility following passage of major civil rights legislation. When he sent his first budget to Congress in late 1967, Democratic Representative John L. McMillan, chair of the House Committee on the District of Columbia, responded by having a truckload of watermelons delivered to Washington’s office.In April 1968, Washington faced riots following the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr. Although reportedly urged by FBI director J. Edgar Hoover to shoot rioters, Washington refused. He told the Washington Post later, “I walked by myself through the city and urged angry young people to go home. I asked them to help the people who had been burned out.” Only one person refused to listen to him. Republican President Richard Nixon retained Washington after being elected as president in 1968.Congress enacted the District of Columbia Self-Rule and Governmental Reorganization Act on December 24, 1973, providing for an elected mayor and city council. Washington began a vigorous election campaign in early 1974 against six challengers.The Democratic primary race—the real contest in the overwhelmingly Democratic and then-majority black city — eventually became a two-way contest between Washington and Clifford Alexander, future Army Secretary. Washington won the tight race by 4,000 votes. As expected, he won the November general election with a large majority. Home rule took effect when Washington and the newly elected council–the city’s first popularly-elected government since 1871–were sworn into office January 2, 1975. Washington was sworn in by Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall.Although personally beloved by residents, some who nicknamed him “Uncle Walter,” Washington slowly found himself overcome by the problems of managing what was the equivalent of a combination state and city government. The Washington Post opined that he lacked “command presence.” Council chair Sterling Tucker, who wanted to be Mayor, suggested that the problems in the city were because of Washington’s inability to manage city services. Council Member Marion Barry, another rival, accused him of “bumbling and bungling in an inefficiently run city government.”Washington was also constrained by the fact that then as now, the Constitution vested Congress with ultimate authority over the District. Congress thus retained veto power over acts passed by the council, and many matters were subject to council approval.The Washington Monthly noted that Washington’s “gentle ways did not move the city’s bureaucracy. Neither did it satisfy the black voters’ yearning to see the city run by blacks for blacks. Walter Washington was black, but many blacks were suspicious that he was still too tied to the mostly white power structure that had run the city when he was a commissioner.”During his administration he started many new initiatives, for example, the Office of Latino Affairs of the District of Columbia.In the 1978 Democratic mayoral primary, Washington finished third behind Barry and Tucker. He left office on January 2, 1979. Upon his departure from office, he announced that the city had posted a $41 million budget surplus, based on the Federal government’s cash accounting system. When Barry took office, he shifted city finances to the more common accrual system, and he announced that under this system, the city actually had a $284 million deficit. After ending his term as mayor, Washington joined the New York-based law firm of Burns, Jackson, Miller & Summit, becoming a partner. He opened the firm’s Washington, D.C. office.His first wife, Benneta, died in 1991. In 1994, he married Mary Burke Nicholas, an economist and government official. She died November 30, 2014 at age 88. Washington went into semi-retirement in the mid-1990s. He fully retired at the end of the decade in his early eighties. Washington remained a beloved public figure in the District and was much sought after for his political commentary and advice. In 2002, he endorsed Anthony A. Williams for a second mayoral term. Washington’s endorsement carried sufficient weight to be noted by all local news outlets.Washington died at Howard University Hospital on October 27, 2003. Hundreds of mourners came to see him lying in state at the John A. Wilson Building (City Hall), and also attended his funeral at Washington National Cathedral.• 13½ Street, the short alley running alongside the east side of the Wilson Building, was designated Walter E. Washington Way in his honor.• A new housing development in Ward 8 was named the Walter E. Washington Estates.• In 2006, the Council of the District of Columbia named the Washington Convention Center at 801 Mt. Vernon Place NW, as the Walter E. Washington Convention Center. Research more about this great American Champion and share it with your babies. Make it a champion day!