The Virginia Department of Education announced for the first time in history, every school in Hampton is accredited without conditions.

A huge thank you goes to all of our teachers and administrators who seek to ensure academic excellence for every child, every day, whatever it takes.

Bethel High school administrators, proudly pose in their 100% t-shirts.

During the 95th birthday celebration for my predecessor, former delegate, Mary “Dr. C” Christian and her husband, Wilbur “Chuck” Christian, I presented them with 95th birthday certificates from the House of Delegates.

The celebration was truly a time for reflection and for honoring the lives of this beautiful couple. The crowd of 300 people in attendance included family, friends, former delegates with whom she had served and current elected officials. It was a wonderful celebration.

A big thank you goes to Carlos Hopkins, VA Secretary of Veterans and Defense Affairs along with his team for being the guest speakers for our Veterans Round table Discussion. Approximately 40 veterans joined the discussion. A tremendous thank you goes to Hampton’s Olive Garden for providing a delicious lunch of spaghetti, bread sticks and that delicious salad for which they are known. Dionne Archibald and her team set up a display with information about additional groups that can help veterans: Active Veterans With Answers, Dimes for Vets and Vet Girls Rock. We look forward to hosting another meeting before the end of the year.

On Thursday, September 26th, I opened the Maternal Health Listening Session with remarks. It was great listening to the citizens of Hampton give advice on ways to improve maternal health and eliminate racial disparities in childbirth.

Congratulations go to Cadet Captain Joseph Bowers for being awarded the Legion of  Valor Bronze Cross for Achievement Award. Bowers is a senior at Phoebus High School and Battalion Commanding Officer of the unit. Only four cadets in the nation receive this award each year. Some of the requirements include having a class standing in the top 25 percent and demonstrating exemplary military leadership. Following a welcome from CW03 Randolph P. Mann, USMC (Retired), Hampton Mayor Donnie Tuck, presented Cadet Bowers with a proclamation from the city. It was also an honor for me to present Cadet Bowers with a Commendation from the House of Delegates. It was a beautiful evening for a remarkable young man. Best wishes Cadet Captain Bowers.

You may remember that I sponsored legislation that would fund the maintenance and upkeep of neglected Historic African American Cemeteries. Last week I met with several  people who are caring for these cemeteries in Hampton. The purpose of the meeting was to understand the steps that must be followed to receive the funds for maintenance.

Stephanie Williams, Deputy Director, VA Department of Historic Resources and archaeologist Mike Clem were both in attendance. Mr. Clem was able to answer questions about how the actual survey is conducted and how to maintain and care for markers and cemeteries.  
There are thirteen historic African American Cemeteries in the City of Hampton, six of which are not being cared: 

Bassette (Randolph Street)
Elmerton/Mary Peake (King Street)
Pleasant Shade
Thornton Cemetery (Woodland Rd. off Mercury Blvd)
Tucker Cemetery (Sharon Court)
Union Street & Queen Street Cemeteries (Union St.)

After an informative discussion, necessary forms were distributed and questions were answered. Ms. Williams and Mr. Clem took the time to visit some of the cemeteries to determine an accurate count of the graves that meet the designation of being “historic.”  There is much more to do. I’m sure we’ll be meeting again very soon. If you know anyone who may be associated with any of these cemeteries, please contact my office 757-827-5921.

 As always, it is a pleasure to serve you. Thank you.
Delegate Jeion A. Ward
Virginia House of Delegates
Ninety-Second House District

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Jeion Ward for Delegate · PO Box 7310 · Hampton, VA 23666 · USA

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