Braddock District Community Corner
Attention Homeowner and Civic Associations
For the next phase of our Community Engagement Initiative, we are
looking for communities interested in taking the next step by taking on a
new project or goal. Supervisor Cook would be happy to meet with your
organization to discuss how to launch such an effort. Please contact the
Supervisor’s scheduler, Lindsey Smith at 703-425-9300 to set a time for
Supervisor Cook to meet with your organization.
Please provide us with the latest contact information for your Association Officers so that we may keep you better informed of events in Braddock District that may impact you and your neighborhood. Call (703) 425-9300 or email Ann Sharp at firstname.lastname@example.org with your latest information.
Supervisor Cook in the Community
Throughout the month of March, Supervisor Cook sought, and received a great deal of input on the County Executive’s proposed budget. He held four budget town hall meetings in the Braddock District: one at Braddock Hall as part of the Braddock District Council’s monthly programming, one at Robinson Secondary School with School Board member Tessie Wilson, and then one at Ravensworth and Little Run Elementary Schools. He also participated in two additional PTSA meetings, one at Annandale High School and another at Lake Braddock Secondary School.
On March 8th, Supervisor Cook attended a meeting at Bonnie Brae Elementary School and discussed issues of concern for citizens on Zion Drive.
On March 11th, Supervisor Cook attended a graduation ceremony for the Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy. It was held at the Center for the Arts on the campus of George Mason University.
On March 17th, John celebrated his one year anniversary as Supervisor of the Braddock District.
On March 18th, the Supervisor had the rare treat to attend a rehearsal by the Lake Braddock SS Band. This group of talented musicians was preparing for it’s historic trip to China, outlined elsewhere in the Beacon. Supervisor Cook was especially surprised when director Roy Holder asked him to get up on the podium and conduct a march. It went very well and no one was hurt!
March 20th was a busy day for the Supervisor. He went over to the Government Center to join members of his District for lunch at the Women’s Voices Forum. In the evening, John went to the Kings Park Pot Luck dinner which was held at Lake Braddock Secondary School and then went off to help celebrate the 50th anniversary of Ravensworth Farm.
On March 23rd, Supervisor Cook visited the Commons Community Center in Burke to attend a VRE expansion hearing. The VRE Board is one of the many other Boards and Commissions to which he has been appointed.
On March 24th, Supervisor Cook helped kick-off the second Neighborhood College, this time held at Baddock Hall.
On March 27th, in Braddock Hall, Supervisor Cook addressed the participants of the Fairfax Restoration Project. This series is highlighting how we can be better stewards of the land here in Fairfax County.
Board of Supervisors Welcomes Home Vietnam Veterans
On March 23, the Board of Supervisors recognized the more than 38,000
Vietnam Veterans who live in Fairfax County. In a morning ceremony, the
Board took an opportunity to express its appreciation and gratitude for
the sacrifices that these men and women made in defense of our
Board members noted that this recognition is well deserved, and recalls a painful moment in U.S. history, when thousands of young men came back from a terrible conflict to a country that often did not differentiate between a war it opposed and the warriors who fought it. For this reason, March 30 has been proclaimed by the United States Congress to be Welcome Home Vietnam Veterans’ Day in perpetuity.
Delegate David Bulova has made a similar motion that was unanimously accepted by the General Assembly. The ceremony was designed to promote awareness of the contributions these veterans have continued to make in business, the arts, civic affairs and government service and their efforts to mentor a new generation of veterans.
In speaking to the Board, the Fairfax Chapter of the Vietnam Veterans described how the organization is currently trying to assist the young men and women now returning from Iraq and Afghanistan to make the adjustment to civilian life. They spoke of the 21 percent unemployment that this cohort is experiencing, the need for transitional housing for homeless veterans and the importance of the community keeping a commitment to these vets who embody the best of the American spirit and should be considered heroes.
BNN: Braddock Senior Centers
On this month’s edition of Braddock Neighborhood News, Supervisor Cook
interviews Mary Stevens from the Department of Housing and Community
Development and Evan Braff, the Division Supervisor for Senior Services,
to discuss the programs and services the County has available for our
senior citizens. Mary and Evan share information with viewers about
facilities and services at Little River Glen as well as information about
Olley Glen, the new center under construction.
In the coming decades, seniors will be an increasing share of our population. Our local government has been innovative in adapting to this transition.
To learn more, please tune in to Braddock Neighborhood News on Fridays and Sundays at 5 p.m. and Wednesdays at 7 p.m. on Channel 16. You can also watch a streaming video of the show by visiting http://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/cable/channel16/asx/supervisor_cook.asx.
Looking Back At Fairfax: Abolitionist Escapes from Jail
Dodging the hangman in April 1834, a man escaped from the Fairfax jail
and slipped into history. No one remembers Windover now, but had he not
escaped, his name would be widely known today. There would be books about
him. He might have been to Fairfax County what abolitionist John Brown
became to Harper’s Ferry.
In September 1833, a white man named John Windover was arrested at Fairfax Courthouse for handing money and guns to slaves and telling them to rebel or escape. He advised them that he had others in neighboring counties ready to assist.
What is known about him comes to us from 1830s newspaper accounts - first he was seen near the courthouse urging slaves to get free. Two weeks later he came back into town- with a box believed to contain weapons and money- to incite the insurrection. He tried to set the jail on fire, and then escaped in April 1834.
All this came on the heels of the Nullification Crisis, an explosive period in American history when South Carolina threatened to secede from the Union.
History, as most of us appreciate, has a way of repeating itself and of surprising us. “The only thing new in the world,” President Harry Truman once said, “is the history you don’t know.” History becomes especially enjoyable when you discover these new things and stop to realize that the past was not destined or pre-ordained to happen the way it did. A vote here, an election there, a death in one town or some other single event might have caused things to turn out much different.
Paul N. Herbert is the President of the Historical Society of Fairfax County and the author of God Knows All Your Names.