African American veterans reflect on past in honor of Black History Month

Posted at 5:06 PM, Feb 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-02-14 18:17:48-05

More than 350 years of combined military service was gathered in one room.

Since 2008, the guys from the Retired Military Brothers Association of Central Texas have gathered once a week to share a good meal and a good chat. 

They took the time to reflect on their past. 

A.C. Cotton shared he has a good memory of what it was like to live in the segregated south.

"The freedom part, you just felt like just didn't nobody care about you," said Cotton, the first African American CSM for the 1st Cavalry Division.

From private to command sergeant major, the Vietnam veteran saw it all in his more than 33 years of service. 

"I was in there for three years before Eisenhower ordered it to be completely integrated, and so, during that period of time things were a little bit rough, but we made it. We made it work," said Cotton.  

He was not the only one who felt the impact of the times. Retired first sergeant and founder of the group Henry Mosley agreed. 

"It was a different experience to tell people of a different race from different parts of the country they had to obey what I tell them to do," said Mosley.  

The Retired Military Brothers Association of Central Texas meets once a week and the men shared their bond over war stories and talk about life.  

"To talk and have a friendship about where we came from," said Mosley.  

Members of the group explained they are proud to have made an impact on U.S. history. 

"Blacks have always served proudly, regardless to how their culture treated them. They still held a banner. They still loved their country. They still performed their duty every day," said Cotton.  

"They took their soldiers to war and brought them back," said Mosley.

Through the Retired Military Brothers Association of Central Texas, what started with four veterans meeting for lunch each week, has now expanded to at least 15.

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