In honor of Black History Month, we are doing something a little different for February’s Resident of the Month. Instead of a resident we will be focusing on a spouse, Mrs. Leona Beatty’s deceased husband, Charles “Charlie” Beatty. Mr. Beatty was born in Magnolia, North Carolina; one of five children. Following his graduation from C.F. Pope Colored High School, he attended Tuskeegee University. Mr. Beatty then joined the Navy, where he served for six years in Okinawa, Japan at the close of WWII before receiving an Honorable Discharge.
While in the Navy, Mr. Beatty played Short Stop for the Philadelphia Stars Baseball Team and afterwards on a number of Negro Minor Leagues throughout the country. Of the returning Black veterans, Baseball Commissioner A.B. “Happy” Chandler would say, “If they can fight and die on Guadalcanal in the South Pacific, they can play baseball in America.” (As Commissioner, Mr. Chandler would give the approval of Jackie Robinson’s contract with the Brooklyn Dodgers.)
Mr. Beatty would go on to become one of the first African-American owners of a Chevron Gas Station in the Wynnefield section of the city. Mr. Beatty was also a loving and beloved father, grandfather, and great-grandfather.