Twenty students from seven area middle schools were honored Wednesday for their writing skills as part of the Army War College’s African American/Black History Month Observance.

The event featured remarks from Brig. Gen. William J. Walker, acting commanding general for the National Guard Bureau at the District of Columbia, and a panel discussion featuring three Army War College resident students, Lt. Col. Andre Burks, Lt. Col. Landis Maddox and Lt. Col. Yolanda Maddox, who spoke on this year’s theme “African Americans in Times of War.”

Each February, the U.S. Army celebrates and pays tribute to black soldiers and recognizes the contributions they have made in past wars and are continuing to make in overseas contingency operations.

The winning essays can be found at