A Message From The Publisher
As each one has received a special gift, employ it in serving one another as good stewards of the manifold grace of God.. 1 Peter: 4:10(NASB)
By Bobby R. Henry, Sr.
The first time that I came in contact with Mr. Albert Tucker, it was concerning bringing tennis back to Carter(aka Sunland)Park. For those of you who are reading this and you don’t know, Sunland Park it’s in the “Hood” and it is a historical place for those of us who played on its hallow grounds.
From the chain basketball rimmed nets that once echoed a ring when the ball passed through reverberating in your soul, today it has been replaced by “swoosh.” No matter, nothing can replace the memories.
From the aches and pains we got perhaps by twisting your ankles in one of the holes on the playing fields or swallowing pool water when you got thrown in by one of the lifeguards.
Never-the-less this was ours and no one had the right to try to change it without the permission of the ‘old schoolers’ who roamed the park like wolves protecting their grounds.
So, when this Northern, smooth talking and well dressed Negro approached me about bringing life back to the park, he had my undivided attention.
First, who was he and where did he come from?
It took me a minute to get past his smoothness and that smile. But, I soon discovered beneath all of that Tucker was a genuine brother that knew and cared about the “Hood”.
Tucker allowed me to further understand what it meant when we said, “don’t let the smooth taste fool ya.” He could give it as well as take it. In my book he could talk it as well as walk it.
We had our moments where we disagreed however, publicly we did not allow it to put the “Hood” in a negative light.
Tucker reconnected Black South to its prominence on some of the main stages through out the country by bringing them here.
There are a number of moments that could cause me to tear up with joy for what Tucker did but, two of them stand out the most. One was when he allowed the National Newspaper Publishers Association(NNPA, the Black Press of America) to experience one of our best mid-winter conferences EVER. And the other was when through his efforts our White Hat Gala allow our father to smile from his soul outward and some community soldiers received homage for their serving.
Tucker was about making his people look good!
It’s good to know those that truly believe in making sure that Black communities get their share of exposure, financial support and the platforms to engage a national audience and Tucker made sure if he had anything to do with it; he did just that.
We often shared our concerns of our communities not getting the support needed not only from the outside but the lack of support from within. Tucker was just as cool in negotiations, delivering to the communities as he was in his wardrobe with that award winning smile. He was just as comfortable with dignitaries as he was in the “Hood”.
Every once and a while someone comes along and not being from your particular “Hood” represents the “Hood” because the “Hood” is apart of the love that makes him/her and Albert Tucker was just that. He cared about where he came from, no matter where he was and he was not ashamed to tell the world and to make it possible for others to see the greatness of it. And that with a little help the “Hood” could stand next to anyone and any place to shine and not be diminished from another’s brilliance.
Yes, Albert Tucker will certainly be missed and thank goodness his work will be seen for lifetimes.