AUSTIN — Bob Sneed will perform excerpts from his one-man play, "Held in Trust," 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 19 at the Ambrosio Guillen Texas State Veterans Home, 9650 Kenworthy Street, El Paso. The public is invited to this free performance.
The play tells the life story of West Point's first black graduate, Henry Ossian Flipper, and is being held at the popular veterans home in honor of Black History Month. Flipper was born a slave in 1856 and distinguished himself during a period when newly freed slaves struggled for recognition and equality. His first assignment was with the black officers of the 10th Cavalry's Buffalo Soldiers, in Fort Sill, Oklahoma. There, he was credited with reducing the spread of malaria by building a drainage ditch. That ditch - known to this day as Flipper's Ditch - is a National Historic Landmark.
Flipper's military career came to an end, however, when he fell victim to racial prejudice and was accused of embezzling and conduct unbecoming of an officer. Acquitted on the embezzlement charge, but found guilt on the conduct charge, Flipper was dismissed. Flipper, his friends and family, were determined to clear his name, and in 1999 - 40 years after his death - Flipper was pardoned by President Clinton.
Texas State Veterans Homes are made possible through a unique partnership between the Texas Veterans Land Board and the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs. Each home provides skilled long-term nursing care, comprehensive rehabilitation programs, special diets, recreational activities, social services, a library, and a certified, secured Alzheimer's unit with its own secured outdoor courtyard.
For additional information on Texas State Veterans Homes, please call 1-800-252-VETS (8387) or visit the Texas Veterans Land Board website at www.texasveterans.com.
For additional information on Texas State Veterans Homes and special home, land and home improvement loans for Texas veterans, call 1-800-252-VETS (1-800-252-8387), or visit the VLB website at www.texasveterans.com.
WHO: Bob Sneed
WHAT: Held in Trust
WHEN: 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 19, 2011
WHERE: Ambrosio Guillen Texas State Veterans Home, 9650 Kenworthy Street