A Virginia state senator who voted against allowing the removal of Confederate monuments was a leader in an ROTC company in college that flew the Confederate flag, making him the latest politician in the Old Dominion to face new questions about the South’s racist past.
While a student at Texas A&M University in the 1980s, Bryce Reeves, now a Republican whose district runs from Charlottesville to Fredericksburg, was a member of Company B-2 in the famed Corps of Cadets.
The company, an Army ROTC outfit, made heavy use of the Confederate flag, including in its logo, which depicted a wooden barrel over the flag. According to the university’s 1987 yearbook, Reeves was named the “Guidon Bearer” of Company B-2, which labeled itself as having “The Best Damn Outfit on the campus.”
A photograph posted to a Facebook group dedicated to the company appeared to show Reeves standing with eight other students waving the flag in 1986, more than 120 years after the Confederacy collapsed in 1865.
In the 1990s, Texas A&M barred members of the Corps of Cadets from using the Confederate flag in their logos or displaying it in their dorm rooms, the Dallas Morning News reported.
In February 2016, Reeves voted to make it unlawful for local authorities to remove Confederate monuments throughout Virginia. Then-Gov. Terry McAuliffe called this “a sweeping override of local authorities” and “interpretive signage to tell the story of some of our darkest moments during the Civil War.”
Earlier this year, Reeves voted against ending “Lee Jackson Day,” a state holiday commemorating the lives of Confederate generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas “Stonewall” Jackson.