Fort Lee Army Base Will Be Renamed After Two Black Pioneers

Fort Lee Army Base Will Be Renamed After Two Black Pioneers

Virginia’s Fort Lee Army base will be renamed after two Black officers of the U.S. Army. According to the United States Army, Fort Lee will now be known as Fort Gregg-Adams. The decision comes after the Congressional Naming Commission voted to remove names, signs, or anything that praises the Confederate Army or Confederate officers. 

According to the U.S. Army website, Fort Gregg-Adams is just one of nine Army bases that will undergo name changes in the coming years. 

“We are deeply honored to have Lt. Gen. Arthur Gregg and Lt. Col. Charity Adams as the new namesakes for our installation,” said Maj. Gen. Mark Simerly, a commanding general at Fort Lee.

Lt. Gen. Gregg, a Florence, South Carolina, native, enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1946. He was 17 years old. Lt. Gregg served in Germany as a medical laboratory technician and then as a Quartermaster at Leadership School at Fort Lee before tours in Nuremberg and Germany as a member of the 95th Quartermaster Battalion, according to the Military Officers Association of America. 

“Once I arrived, I was told there were no medical facilities operated by the U.S. Army staffed with Black soldiers,” Lt. Gregg said. “So, I could not get a job as a medical laboratory technician in Germany.”

Lt. Gregg earned his first and second stars as a general officer in 1972 and 1976, respectively. He was also the first Black person to earn the title of lieutenant general in the U.S. Army.   

Gregg finished his career in the U.S. Army in 1981.

Maj. Adams not only pushed past being Black in America, but she was Black and a woman. Despite the obstacles that come with womanhood, Maj. Adams became the first Black woman to lead a unit during her tour of World War II.

In 1944, Adams was commander of the 6888th Central Postal Directory Battalion. Her unit also accomplished successful missions in Rouen and Paris before being promoted to lieutenant colonel.

Adams went on to earn her master’s degree in psychology from Ohio State University. 

Fort Lee received its new official name on April 27.

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