2005 Regular Session

To: Rules

By: Senator(s) Hewes, Dawkins, Gollott, Cuevas, Lee (47th), Moffatt, Robertson, Butler, Carmichael, Chaney, Dearing, Gordon, Harden, Jackson (11th), Jordan, Little, Thames, Thomas, Walls

Senate Concurrent Resolution 547

(As Adopted by Senate and House)


     WHEREAS, Colonel Lawrence E. Roberts, United States Air Force (USAF), Retired, died Tuesday, October 12, 2004, in Biloxi, Mississippi, at 81 years of age; and

     WHEREAS, Colonel Roberts had been a resident of the Mississippi Gulf Coast for 35 years, living in Pascagoula and Biloxi; and

     WHEREAS, Colonel Roberts attended Howard University, received his Bachelor of Science Degree from Morningside College, and received his Master's Degree from Tuskegee Institute; and

     WHEREAS, Colonel Roberts entered the United States Army Air Corps as a Private and retired from the United States Air Force as a Colonel.  He was a graduate of the 44K Class of the prestigious Tuskegee Airmen.  His first assignment was the training program at Tuskegee Army Air Field where he graduated as First Lieutenant and was assigned to the 477th Medium Bombardment Group, and later the 332nd Fighter Wing; and

     WHEREAS, among the 19 service medals and awards received during his service career are the Legion of Merit with two Oak Leaf Clusters, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, the United States Force Commendation Medal, the Distinguished Service Order and Air Service Medal, received from the Republic of Vietnam.  He served in numerous flying, technical and command assignments in the continental United States and Japan, Canada, Turkey and Vietnam.  This service included duty as a Jet Fighter Pilot in the Air Defense Command and as a Flight Instructor at the fighter school at Williams Air Force Base, Ground Electronics Officer in Japan and Canada, Chief of Ground Communication-Electronics and Meteorological Maintenance at an Air Division Headquarters, Department Chief for Ground Electronics and Officer Training at Keesler Air Force Base, Commander of a NATO communications organization and Chief Communications-Electronics and Logistics Advisor to the Vietnamese Air Force Headquarters, and Commander of the Maintenance and Supply Group at Keesler Air Force Base.  After retirement from the United States Air Force, he worked for Global Associates at the National Space Technology Laboratories; and

     WHEREAS, Colonel Roberts was extremely involved both in his church and in his community; he was a former member and vice moderator of the General Assembly Council, Presbyterian Church (USA); former member and Chairman of Council of the Presbytery of Mississippi; and an Elder, First Presbyterian Church (USA), Bay St. Louis, Mississippi.  Colonel Roberts' community activities include being a Member of the Board of Trustees, Leadership Gulf Coast; former member and Chairman of the Board of Trustees for Pass Christian School District; former member and Chairman of the Executive Board of the Mississippi School Boards Association; former member and Chairman of the Southern Region of the School Boards Association; and Director of the Genesis Foundation; and

     WHEREAS, Colonel Roberts was preceded in death by his parents and a brother.  He is survived by his wife of 57 years, Mrs. Lucimarian Tolliver Roberts of Biloxi, Mississippi; three daughters:  Dorothy Roberts McEwen of Long Beach, Mississippi, Sally-Ann Roberts Craft of New Orleans, Louisiana, and Robin R. Roberts of New York, New York (ESPN Commentator); one son, Lawrence E. Roberts II and wife Cynthia of Houston, Texas; eight grandchildren; two great-granddaughters; and numerous nieces, nephews and friends; and

     WHEREAS, it is with sadness that we note the passing of this decorated veteran who served his country and state in many ways, whose influence will continue his legacy of strength, responsibility, integrity and faith for generations, and who was an American hero and man of God:

     NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED BY THE SENATE OF THE STATE OF MISSISSIPPI, THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES CONCURRING THEREIN, That we do hereby commend and celebrate the life of Colonel Lawrence E. Roberts, USAF, Retired, of Biloxi, Mississippi, a decorated veteran, member of the prestigious Tuskegee Airmen and true American hero, and express to his surviving family the sympathy of the Legislature on his passing.

     BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, That this resolution be presented to the surviving family of Colonel Roberts, be forwarded to the Commander of Keesler Air Force Base, and be made available to the Capitol Press Corps.