A ceremony was held Wednesday, July 13 at Gulfport-Biloxi International Airport to unveil a bust memorializing the life and service of Col. Lawrence E. Roberts.
The bust is displayed in the Gulfport airport terminal alongside the busts of Col. John C. Robinson and Lt. Jeremiah J. O’Keefe. Robinson was a resident of Gulfport and is noted as one of the first African American pilots in Mississippi. O’Keefe was an ace pilot in World War II.
Roberts began his military career in the Army Air Corps as a pre-aviation cadet. His first assignment was to the Tuskegee Airmen program. He rose to the rank of colonel in the United States Air Force. Roberts was a founding Board member of the John C. Robinson Brown Condor Association.
Roberts’ bust was commissioned by his children: Lawrence E. Roberts II of Houston, Texas; Sally-Ann Roberts of New Orleans, Louisiana; Dorothy Roberts of Pass Christian, Mississippi; and Robin Roberts of New York City, New York at the request of the John C. Robinson Brown Condor Association. Ken and Mary Ott Davidson of Saucier, Mississippi are the sculptors.
Ceremony attendees and participants included members of Roberts’ family, officials from Keesler Air Force Base, various city officials, Lawrence Roberts Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen and the John C. Robinson Brown Condor Association.
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