Black History Month - February, 2014

Strategic Systems Programs Command - 10 February 2014

Black History Month - February, 2014

Phillip Brashear addresses the attendees from the Strategic Systems Programs Command during their Black History Month Observance on 10 February 2014

The festival represents the rich heritage of African culture and the manner in which it weaves into our national tapestry. Festival visitors are introduced to the continent through art, performance, entertainment, demonstration, music, and food. A marketplace of sculptures, paintings, prints, baskets, and other assorted handcrafted wares and jewelry contribute to the ambiance of the UMOJA Festival. While children's activities are a specialty at the festival, this year is no exception, with a Kids Corner featuring storytelling, bounce houses, coloring contests, games and crafts with origins in several African countries.

Phillip Brashear was invited to attend this event by Lorraine Stokes of the Portsmouth Recreation Department. During the opening ceremony on Friday, May 24th, the Honorable Mayor of Portsmouth, Kenneth Wright presented Phillip Brashear with a city-wide proclamation declaring that May 24 will be known as Carl Brashear Day. On Saturday, Phillip manned a display of Carl Brashear memorabilia as a part of the UMOJA Festival in the Heritage section the fairgrounds.

Black History Month - February, 2014

Vice Admiral Terry J. Benedict addresses the attendees.

Black History Month - February, 2014

Black History Month Observance on 10 February 2014

Black History Month - February, 2014

Phillip Brashear addresses the attendees.

 

23rd Annual UMOJA Festival

Portsmouth, VA -- The City of Portsmouth hosted the 23rd Annual UMOJA Festival starting on Friday, May 24 at 5:30pm and ran through Sunday, May 26th. This three-day festival took place at nTelos Wireless Pavilion and Festival Park.

23rd Annual UMOJA Festival

The Brashear tent at the 23rd Annual UMOJA Festival

The festival represents the rich heritage of African culture and the manner in which it weaves into our national tapestry. Festival visitors are introduced to the continent through art, performance, entertainment, demonstration, music, and food. A marketplace of sculptures, paintings, prints, baskets, and other assorted handcrafted wares and jewelry contribute to the ambiance of the UMOJA Festival. While children's activities are a specialty at the festival, this year is no exception, with a Kids Corner featuring storytelling, bounce houses, coloring contests, games and crafts with origins in several African countries.

Phillip Brashear was invited to attend this event by Lorraine Stokes of the Portsmouth Recreation Department. During the opening ceremony on Friday, May 24th, the Honorable Mayor of Portsmouth, Kenneth Wright presented Phillip Brashear with a city-wide proclamation declaring that May 24 will be known as Carl Brashear Day. On Saturday, Phillip manned a display of Carl Brashear memorabilia as a part of the UMOJA Festival in the Heritage section the fairgrounds.

23rd Annual UMOJA Festival

Mayor Wright

23rd Annual UMOJA Festival

Ms. Stokes

23rd Annual UMOJA Festival

Sheriff Watson

 

Black History Celebration for the Naval Surface Warfare Center

CW4 Phillip Brashear was invited to speak at the Naval Support Activity in Panama City, Florida for the annual Black History Celebration for the Naval Surface Warfare Center on February 5, 2013. The NSWC Diversity Council tasked member Dr. Jermaine Kennedy to contact Brashear who he found through the Carl Brashear website.

Black History Celebration

Speaking with a group of military members

Phillip arrived in Panama City, Florida on the 4th of February and was met with Dr Kennedy who gave him a tour of the different commands who are stationed at the Naval Support Activity. Phillip spent a few hours at the activity's diving school command where new military divers are recruited and initially trained. The command is decorated with various diving apparatus used by divers in the past and present. There are many references to the late Master Chief and Master Diver Carl Brashear throughout the command. Many of the dive tables and the history of diving are directly related to the work of Carl Brashear many years ago. As Phillip talked to the dive students about his career as a military helicopter pilot, many students wanted to know more about the man behind the legend in his famous Navy diving father.

On the 5th of February at the Naval activity's conference center, Phillip delivered the keynote address. He acknowledged the many achievements of his father along with the way his father's career influenced him to enter into a military specialty by becoming a pilot. He also talked about the personal standards his parents instilled in him. He corrected a few misconceptions about the movie "Men of Honor' and the true facts behind it. The Black History Month Celebration ended with a cultural taste –testing of different foods of African descent.

Navy Divers

Philip Brashear speaks with a group of navy divers.

Carl Brashear Portrait

Phillip Brashear stands next to a portrait of Carl Brashear.

Plaque Presentation

Group at the plaque presentation.

 

VA Medical Center Donation

On October 4th 2012, the Carl Brashear Foundation presented a donation in the amount of $1000 to the Hunter Holmes McGuire VA Medical Center in Richmond Va.

VA Medical Center Donation

Phillip Brashear hands the donation check to Janell Giles

Phillip Brashear, the president of the foundation and son of the late Master Chief, Master Diver Carl Brashear was on hand to present Janelle Giles of Voluntary Services the donation to the Center's General Purpose Fund. Public Affairs representative Fernandez Scott was also present.

This is the foundation's third gift to the fighting men and women of this country. The Walter Reed National Medical Center and the Hampton VA Medical center have received similar donations. It is the goal of the Carl Brashear Foundation to give gifts to all of the military hospitals in and around the Virginia area first and then to extend the gifts to all VA centers around the country. The foundation's main tool of fund-raising is the Carl Brashear Commemorative Coin that is given to everyone who gives a donation of $25 or more. The coin has Carl Brashear's resemblance on one side and the famous Navy Diving Emblem on the other.

Carl Brashear was a patient at a few of the nation's VA centers during his 32 year career but after the movie 'Men of Honor' release in 2000, he spoke at several others as a motivational speaker. Phillip Brashear feels donating to these centers is the right thing to do to honor Carl Brashear's memory and dedication to our country.

 

Men of Honor Screening

Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Manpower and Reserve Affairs Juan Garcia presented Phillip Brashear with a letter of appreciation.

On February 10, 2012, the Pentagon in Washington D.C. honored the late Master Chief and Master Diver Carl Brashear with a movie viewing of 'Men of Honor' in the Pentagon auditorium. The announcement was sent to all military and government employees in the Pentagon and surrounding areas. There was also an informative session before the movie. The presentation was given by retired Navy Diver CWO4 Les Burke and Carl Brashear's son, Army Helicopter pilot CW4 Phillip Brashear. CWO4 Burke described his personal relationship with the late Master Chief and the influence it had on his life. In addition, he noted the many changes to the diving equipment since the early days of Navy diving. CW4 Phillip Brashear also acknowledged the personal relationship he had with his father and the part it played in his life. Phillip acknowledged that he followed in the footsteps of the 'Tuskegee Airmen' in his dream of flying military aircraft.

Men of Honor Screening

Philip Brashear examines a leg prosthesis.

Men of Honor Screening

Philip Brashear shows his father's injury location.

Men of Honor Screening

Phillip Brashear presented with a letter of appreciation.

 

Carl Brashear's Life Celebration

On July 25th, 2011 the Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek - Fort Story Brashear Conference Center held a 'Life Celebration' of Navy Master Diver Boatswain Mate Master Chief Carl M. Brashear

Captain Charles Stuppard, Commander, JEB Little Creek-Ft Story, and his fine staff hosted this event in extraordinary fashion. Serving as the keynote speaker of the event was the Honorable L. Douglas Wilder, former Governor of the State of Virginia and the first elected African-American Governor in the United States. Additional speakers included Admiral John C. Harvey, Jr. Commander, United States Fleet Forces Command, Rear Admiral Frank A. Morneau, Deputy Director, Expeditionary Warfare Division, Office of Chief of Naval Operations, and Navy Master Diver, Master Chief J. Lemount King, USN Retired. Mr. James McArthur, Vice Admiral, USN Retired, Vice President, Lockheed Martin Center for Innovation in Suffolk, Virginia was a strong supporter of sponsorship for the evetn also provided remarks. Serving as the Mistress of Ceremonies was WTKR Channel 3 Hampton Roads' own Mrs. Bianca Martinez.

Carl Brashear Memorial Ceremony

Carl Brashear Memorial Ceremony

The ceremony started with opening remarks from Mrs. Bianca Martinez who shared the story of the birth of her child in the Portsmouth Naval Medical Center where Carl Brashear passed away in 2006. Sailors from the base 'Posted the Colors' as Veroncia Watson, USN Retired. sung a beautiful rendition of our National Anthem. Minister Carl Jones of Portsmouth, Virginia gave the Invocation before Captain Charles Stuppard welcomed everyone to his base for this memorable and historic event. Master Tyler Brashear, grandson of Carl Brashear read an inspirational poem titled "A True Man of Honor" featured on the Carl Brashear Foundation website and authored by Minister Carl Jones. A short video was presented to the audience of the Newport News Fireboat Carl Brashear. Mr. J. Lemount King gave remarks concerning the legacy of Carl Brashear from his experience having Brashear as a personal mentor and friend. Mr. King is one of five African-American Master Divers in the United States Navy. Rear Admiral Morneau gave remarks concerning the legacy of Carl Brashear. The audience was introduced to a short clip of the christening ceremony for the United States Naval Ship Carl Brashear, a vessel under the control of the Military Sealift Command. The Honorable L. Douglas Wilder took the stage and talked about his personal relationship with Carl Brashear. He and Brashear were honored at a function a few years ago and Governor Wilder spoke of their conversations. Governor Wilder told the audience that both he and Carl Brashear knew each other's story and the fortitude it took for each man to rise to the level of achievement they both accomplished. He also spoke passionately about the importance of never forgetting the principles Carl Brashear stood for and the attitude towards life he lived by. Phillip Brashear followed with presentations to the speakers, which included a Commemorative Carl Brashear Coin and Carl Brashear Foundation 'Thank You' letter. Phillip presented the Hampton Veterans Administration Hospital in Hampton, VA a check from the Carl Brashear Foundation in the amount of, $1000. The check was accepted by Mrs. Judith Curtis on behalf of the VA Hospital. Phillip acknowledged family members to include his brother Patrick Brashear, Portsmouth, VA., who personally takes care of the family matriarch in the person of Junetta Brashear, wife of Carl Brashear for 28 years and mother of his four sons. Reverend Earl B. Hall, Pastor, Greater Nazarene Baptist Church, Mechanicsville, VA and congregation were acknowledged. He also acknowledged Mr. Gus Liggon, Customer Operations Director, Defense Logistics Agency in Richmond, VA, as well as other colleagues who supported the event. Lastly, he acknowledged three key individuals, responsible for the commemorative event and planned the details of the ceremony. They are Mrs. Sandra Brashear, wife of Phillip Brashear and Virginia State employee, Division of Child Support Enforcement, Richmond, VA; Mrs. Glenda B. Arrington, a government employee, U. S. Fleet Forces Command, Norfolk, VA and friend of Carl Brashear, and; Mrs. Martha Walker, Curator, Nauticus, The National Maritime Center, Norfolk, VA. All three were honored with a dozen roses as gratitude for their service and making this event a memorable one. Mr. Jim McArthur followed with remarks of his introduction to Phillip and told the audience of his instant readiness to support the Carl Brashear celebration. Mr. Dawayne Brashear provided closing remarks highlighting the legacy of Carl Brashear (his father) and the importance of continuing in his footsteps. He especially accentuated the importance of his mother, Junetta Brashear, and her commitment to raising the sons of Carl Brashear acknowledging her sacrifices to her family as well. In the audience was Dawayne's daughter, Ms. Lauren Brashear, who served as the 'Maid of Honor' for the christening ceremony of the USNS Carl Brashear (TAK-7) in San Diego, September 2008. Minister Carl Jones closed-out the celebration with the benediction.

The event was catered at the Brashear Conference Center through sponsorship of the Lockheed Martin Corporation. Many thanks to Mr. James McArthur, Vice President and the great men and women of the Center for Innovation in Suffolk, VA. for their support. Many thanks to The Navy League of Hampton Roads and the staff of the Brashear Conference Center, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek-Fort Story who were instrumental in the success of the event. Special thanks to Mrs. Jo Carter and Mrs. Kris Edmondson for managing the Commemorative Coin donations of over $1400 in honor of the Carl Brashear Foundation.

This celebration was the brainstorm idea of Ms. Glenda Arrington who served as the coordinator and director. The success of this event is due to her attention to detail and energetic spirit in all matters that lead to the awesome event to honor such a great man. There are countless other volunteers that gave their time and efforts to make this first-time event successful. I want to personally THANK YOU for your contribution.

 

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