Brittany ComakFeb 28, 2018, 9:08 pmMar 1, 2018, 4:10 pm

Hempstead honors African-American veterans for community work

Jeffrey McQueen, Brent Russell receive award for helping other servicemen assimilate into daily life

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HEMPSTEAD — A Long Island town is honoring African-American members of its community as a way to close out and celebrate Black History Month.

"We are part of this country. We came from the continent of Africa, but we are here. So, I just want everybody to understand that and know this program is not just being held to entertain, but to teach and to learn," Senior Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby said.

Hempstead's most significant part of African-American history is also part of its present: Senior Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby. She fought in the 1980s and '90s in a lawsuit against the town alleging that minority populations were not being properly represented. In the late '90s, a federal judge ruled that the voting system had to be replaced, and Goosby was elected in 1999. She is the first African-American woman to be elected to the town council and the first African-American to be a senior councilperson.

Hempstead honored African-Americans making an impact on a local level like military veterans Jeffrey McQueen and Brent Russell who spend their time helping other veterans assimilate into daily life. Both received a community service award.

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