Kent Withers Slaughter attended P.S. 143 and was an honor student during his years at the school. He later became a test/fighter pilot with the United States Air Force and was tragically killed during a testing exercise in 1960. Prior to his duty with the Strategic Air Command (SAC), Lt. Slaughter received a commission to and graduated from the US Naval Academy in 1957.
After his death in February of 1960, , Public School 143, Queens awarded students of merit with the Lt. Kent Slaughter medal. This medal is no longer awarded to students and has been replaced with a medal in honor of Dr. Martin Luther King. While there is, or course, no objection to students receiving an award that bears Dr. King's name it should not be in-lieu of an honor that bears the name of someone who attended P.S. 143 and who died an honorable death in service to not only his country but to his community of Corona as well. The medal and Lt. Slaughter are a noble part of the school’s history and should not be forgotten.
We therefore, request that the Lt. Kent Withers Slaughter Medal be reinstate so that the school’s history remains intact and so that Kent Slaughter’s legacy is remembered for generations to come.
We further request that the school's auditorium bear Lt. Kent Withers Slaughter's name.