Bridge builders: City honors Drewary Brown's legacy

Their name plates already affixed to the Drewary Brown Bridge, six "bridge builders" were honored last week with speeches and a reception at First Baptist Church on Main Street.

"This is one of the nicest events in Charlottesville," said Mayor Brown June 9, as he honored the 2005 winners: Paul Gaston, Tillie Kobre Miller, the Rev. Henry B. Mitchell, Nancy K. O'Brien, Gerald C. Speidel, and Eugene Williams.

Since 2001, the City-sponsored awards have been given in the name of Brown, an NAACP leader and one of the founders of the Monticello Area Community Action Agency, who died in 1998. Past honorees have included the late Raymond Bell and Emily Couric.

This year's recipients didn't rest on their laurels. "To build a lasting bridge, you've got to do some demolition first," said Gaston, a UVA history professor.

"Unfortunately," declared Williams, "we're still singing 'We Shall Overcome' 50 years later."

Eugene Williams' daughter, Scheryl Glanton, and Mark Bell

Genevieve Keller, Satyendra Huja, and Virginia Daugherty

2001 honoree Mary Ann Elwood with Mayor David Brown

Sheriff Cornelia Johnson, Honoree Eugene Williams, and Virginia Germino

Sue Lewis and Laura Reaves Robinson, sister of the late Booker T. Reaves, a 2002 honoree

Nancy O'Brien with grandchildren Ryan and Caroline Cox