Bridge named for Fort Gordon's first black commander, Lt. Gen. Robert E. Gray

Tuesday, June 5, 2012 1:19 PM
Last updated Wednesday, June 6, 2012 1:13 AM
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The memory of Fort Gordon’s first black commander was honored Tuesday during a ceremony naming the Walton Way bridge between Fifth and Seventh streets the Lt. Gen. Robert E. Gray Memorial Bridge.

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Mayor Deke Copenhaver gives thumbs up to Annie Gray (right) after the unveiling of the sign dedicating the Walton Way bridge between Fifth and Seventh Streets in memory of Lt. Gen. Robert E. Gray, the first black commander of Fort Gordon.  EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
EMILY ROSE BENNETT/STAFF
Mayor Deke Copenhaver gives thumbs up to Annie Gray (right) after the unveiling of the sign dedicating the Walton Way bridge between Fifth and Seventh Streets in memory of Lt. Gen. Robert E. Gray, the first black commander of Fort Gordon.

“It feels wonderful,” said his widow, Annie. “I know he would be proud of this.”

Gray, who retired from the Army in 1997, died Nov. 23 in a traffic accident on the Georgia Highway 21 bypass outside of Millen, about an hour south of Augusta.

Mayor Deke Copenhaver said naming a bridge for Gray was fitting because he “built bridges and blazed trails” where others built walls.

Gray commanded Fort Gordon from May to June 1990 and August 1991 to July 1994. In 1997, he retired from the Army after more than 31 years.

He oversaw Fort Gordon’s expansion after the Persian Gulf War and initiated technological changes.

During the dedication, Col. Robert Barker, garrison commander at Fort Gordon, said Gray was a mentor to all who knew him.

“When I pass this sign I will salute and remember,” said Lowell Greenbaum, the chairman of the Richmond County Democratic Party.

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Iwannakno
1533
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Iwannakno 06/05/12 - 04:26 pm
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Way to go Deke
Unpublished

While I admire and respect this fine american and his service and this aptly named bridge, why did deke see fit to dishonor other fort commanders by saying they built walls?

Craig Spinks
817
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Craig Spinks 06/05/12 - 04:41 pm
5
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RIP,

General Gray.

No_Longer_Amazed
5143
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No_Longer_Amazed 06/06/12 - 04:31 am
4
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News anchors need to learn

News anchors need to learn rank structure....or at least read their news copy correctly. I watched 12@6 and Lietenant General Gray was demoted to plain Lieutenant Gray.

LTG Gray was a great Soldier and a great American, and I was honored to have served with him!

itsanotherday1
43256
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itsanotherday1 06/06/12 - 01:13 am
4
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From all I've read, LG Gray

From all I've read, LG Gray was a very popular man and deserving of the honor. I would much rather bestow the recognition on people like him than slimy politicians.

stillamazed
1488
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stillamazed 06/06/12 - 10:59 am
3
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I agree.

I never got to meet the man personally but I have heard many soldiers and civilians speak very highly of him and his character. I think this was deserving also itsanotherday.

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