Veteran's memorial hall honors WWI veteran with statue - WREX.com – Rockford’s News Leader

Veteran's memorial hall honors WWI veteran with statue

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Born into slavery, but buried with top military honors-- A Rockford resident is honored for his heroic actions.

An African-American soldier, Charles Young was able to rise in the ranks through major adversity.

Young was born in Kentucky and ended up in Rockford's Camp Grant following a prestigious military career--one that he was never able to get full recognition for.

Today, veteran's memorial hall is trying to change that.

Had it not been for the social climate of the time, many believe Colonel Charles Young would have been the first black general to represent the United States.

Veteran's Memorial Hall unveiled a statue of him to be displayed in Washington D.C.

If the statue is made into a monument in the capital, it will be the first depiction of an African-American military hero.

The presentation is apart of the national coalition of black veterans push to have President Obama recognize young as general.

"His demeanor, his tenacity, his leadership showed the military, as a whole, that black troops deserve to be in leadership roles," U.S. Air Force Veteran, Michael Williams said.

A petition has been started on Move-on.Org to have young promoted.

Congress declared today as "Honorary Charles Young day" for Illinois.

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