Virgil Covington was born in Lafayette, Louisiana. His grandparents on his mothers' side were sharecroppers. They had a farm along the old railroad line between New Orleans and Houston. They had sixteen children, all except for two born to a midwife.
Virgil's parents lived in L.A. but moved back to Louisiana to be closer to family just prior to his birth. Soon enough, the family moved back west and Virgil grew up and came of age in Inglewood.
Michelle Covington was born in San Diego; but half of her family had also came to L.A. from the South. Her great-grandparents were from Natchitoches, Louisiana; they wound up living in L.A. on 87th Place. Michelle grew up to attend UCLA. She was then living in Leimert Park when she met Virgil.
Both Virgil and Michelle Covington are recent subjects of the weekly "Arrival Stories" series of first-person "as told to" columns that post Thursdays on the KCET website.
For anyone interested in reading Michelle's story of how she - and her family before her - wound up living in Los Angeles, please feel free to read the story here:
For anyone interested in reading Virgil and his family's Arrival Story, please feel free to read the story here:
Also, the complete archive of Arrival Stories that have posted so far may be found below -- it features immigrants and migrants recent and distant to Los Angeles telling how they got here, why they came, what life was like back in their previous home, and what their observations are about life here in the city:
If any Leimert Park Beat readers are interested in sharing their Arrival Stories with me for possible inclusion in the KCET.org series, then please email me and let me know.
You can reach me at: arrivalstory AT gmail DOT com.
Best, and thanks for reading this post and perhaps any of the Arrival Stories as well.
Editor, Arrival Stories
arrivalstory AT gmail DOT com