On June 2, I had the privilege to dedicate the intersection of 51st Street and Central Avenue as “Benjamin J. Bowie Post 228.” The square dedication, which coincided with the “Penta-Loom: Ode to Soldiers” mural unveiling, pays homage to the 1st American Legion Post established in California.
Post 228 was named in honor of Corporal Benjamin J. Bowie, who was drafted into the U.S. Army on Oct. 28, 1917. He served in combat with the 92nd Infantry Division, until he was tragically killed on Sept. 11, 1918 by friendly fire. Bowie was the first African American from Los Angeles killed in World War I.
It was my pleasure to honor the Bowie Post 228 and its members, many of whom are advocates for education, public safety and veteran issues affecting the South LA community.
Also as part of this week’s ceremony, we officially unveiled “Penta-Loom: Ode to Soldiers”—portraying the images of personnel from various branches of the military. The mural by artist Patrick Henry Johnson is the first to be commissioned under the City's new mural ordinance and was made possible by a partnership with Union Bank and ArtworxLA. It is part of my office’s ongoing efforts to breathe new life into historic Central Avenue.