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THE VOiCE OF THE BLACK COMMUNITY
THE WEEK OF JUNE 12, 1997
VOLUME 22 NO. 38
ALSO SERVING CABARRUS, CHESTER, ROWAN AND YORK COUNTIES
PHOTOS/HERBERT L WHITE
Top: Calvin Brock (right), one of the top amateur boxers in the United States, credits his father Calvance with helping him balance
sports and academics. “I can’t do my whole life just boxing. There’s a lot of boxers out here in this world, but only a few make it to
the point where they can retire and not have to work again, and you can count those on your fingers.” Above: Father and son at the
Charlotte Boxing Academy.
Father’s guidance helps
son and boxing family
By Herbert L. White
THE CHARLOTTE POST
Calvance Brock is always in
his son’s comer.
Brock, a Charlotte building
restoration contractor, trains
his son Calvin, 22, one of
America’s top amateur boxers.
But there’s more to their rela
tionship than jabs and upper
cuts. 'There’s an emphasis on life
“It’s taken a lot of sacrifice
and creativity,” says Brock, 45.
“It’s just taken a tremendous
amount of commitment. It’s
been like a never-ending
process. We decided that’s
what we’re going to do.”
Brock’s extended family
counts on his guidance, too. He
volunteers at the Charlotte
Boxing Academy, where
youngsters get their first
lessons in the sport and life
itself. Even more experienced
boxers like Charlotte mid
dleweight James McKinney
consider the elder Brock to be
a father figure.
“Calvance is outspoken, he’s
real creative, a real intelligent
man,” McKinney said. “I’ve
never met anybody like him.
He’s real kind and nice.
Anything you need, if he can
help you, hell help you.”
Calvin Brock is 110-31 and
ranked No. 1 nationally in the
201-pound class. He advanced
to the semifinals of the U.S.
Olympic trials last year, two
victories away from earning a
spot on the national team.
Calvin, who is a senior finance
major at UNC Charlotte,
hopes to launch his own busi
nesses someday. Sister Alexis,
21, is a student at Central
Piedmont Community College.
Calvance and his wife Alean,
both Elizabeth City State
University graduates, always
stressed the importance of
“It starts at home. My father
has his degree, my mother has
her degree and basically
See FATHER on page 2A
There’s no reason to be selfish and not help somebody
else who needs help.
Calvance Bmck, 45, on his work with youth at Charlotte Boxing Academy in addition to training his
Pratt released after 27 years
ASSOCIATED PRESS PHOTO
Former Black Panther Geronimo
Pratt was released Tuesday.
By Edward J. Boyer
LOS ANGELES TIMES
SANTA ANA, Calif - After
more than a quarter-century in
custody, former Black Panther
Party leader Elmer “Geronimo”
Pratt strode out of jail Tuesday
into a bright afternoon, free on
bail and surrounded by other
jubilant radical icons of the
Pratt, sentenced to life in
prison for a murder he has
always insisted he did not com
mit, was released on $25,000
'The ruling was made by
Superior Court Judge Everett W.
Dickey, the same judge who May
29 reversed Pratt’s 1972 convic
tion, ruling that Los Angeles
County prosecutors had sup
pressed material evidence that
could have led the jury at Pratt’s
murder trial to reach a different
Prosecutors, who are appealing
Dickey’s ruling, still convinced
that Pratt is guilty, did not
oppose the bail motion.
Flanked by his attorneys,
Johnnie L. Cochran Jr. and
Stuart Hanlon, Pratt, 49, raised
his fist in the air to hundreds of
supporters and well-wishers who
PHOTO'PAUL WILLIAMS III
West Charlotte senior Ebony Singleton (right) is comforted by moth
er Sherrie Warren at Tuesday’s school board hearing.
outrage and tears
By John Minter
THE CHARLOTTE POST
Ebony Singleton burst into tears when she heard Kenneth Simmons
would no longer be principal at West Charlotte High School, where she
will be a senior next year.
Her tears symbolized the hurt, frustration and
anger she and other African American members of
the West Charlotte community felt upon Supt. Eric
Smith’s announcement that Simmons was being
replaced. 'The new West Charlotte principal is Tfeny
Cline, a black middle school principal from Smith’s
former school system in Newport News, Va.
Simmons called the decision a “modem day lynch
“It’s like southern gentile white women yelling
rape,” he said. “Everything was about anonymity.
The people with concerns have all been anony
mous...it’s like wearing hoods over their heads.
“I tried in my administration to make all children feel good about
themselves. 'There are those who do not want that to occim. We can suc
cessfully teach all children when it is something we choose to do. We
have not chosen to.”
On Wednesday, Smith met behind closed doors with West Charlotte’s
See WEST CHARLOTTE on page 3A
approval seen as a
positive first step
By John Minter
THE CHARLOTTE POST
gathered outside the jail after fhe
bail hearing to celebrate his first
taste of freedom.
He told them he plans to attend
his son’s middle school gradua
tion in the Bay Area this week
and go to Morgan City, La., to
visit his 94-year-old mother.
“I need to see my mother,” said
the decorated Vietnam War vet
eran. “Tm a mama’s boy.”
Pratt, who was arrested 27
years ago, also vowed that his
legal team would dedicate itself
to finding the killer of Caroline
Olsen, the schoolteacher he was
See FORMER on page 2A
African Americans are hailing
the formation of a citizens review
board of Charlotte police action.
And, some already have a
favorite to be on the 11-member
board: retired N.C. appeals court
judge Clifton Johnson.
Council voted 10-1 to set up a
board which will investigate com
plaints about police shootings
and mistreatment of citizens,
adopting a proposal by District 2
council member Patrick Cannon.
Members will serve three-year
terms and must not have major
Five members of the board will
be appointed by city council. The
mayor and city manager will each
appoint three members. Citizens
could file complaints with the
board within seven days of com
pletion of internal police action on
Thp board vrill consider police
shootings, excessive force,
improper conduct and improper
Council will review the board in
two years to see if any changes
will be made in its operations.
“It was a history-making
event,” said Dwayne Collins, co
founder of Citizens for Justice, a
grassroots organization formed
after Windy Gail Thompson was
killed by a police officer in
December 1993. Citizens for
Justice and other groups have
pushed for a citizens review
“After four and a half years, I
was glad to see victory (Monday),”
Collins said. “The sentiment of
the community is that finally, our
voices have been heard...our cry
has not once again fallen on deaf
Collins said his group will push
for changes in state law that
would give the citizens review
board power to implement di.sci-
“The next move is to go to the
See REVIEW on page 3A
Strictly Business 7A
Healthy Mind 10A
Regional News 9B
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© 1997 The Charlotte Post
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