Twist and Shout

Twist and Shout
Life is never straight (Joey Kulkin photo)

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Trentonian TV Special: 30th Mercer County Gentlemen's Ball

TRENTON -- Wherever they are in the great beyond, John Couch and Paul Pintella Sr. must be smiling because their baby is now a 30-year-old Gentleman. In 1982, Couch, Pintella and civil rights icon Edith Savage-Jennings were Urban League leaders who brainstormed a gala for black male scholar-athletes deserving of recognition on a grand scale, much like the county's bright young females were recognized at debutante balls. A year later, the Mercer County Gentlemen's Ball was born, and 24 high school seniors became the first of 609 young leaders. Eighteen achievers in the class of 2012 will push the total to 627. The ball begins at 6 o'clock Sunday, June 3, at the Princeton Hyatt.

On Sunday at 9 a.m., class of '84 Gentleman Jun King Walker will host a Trentonian TV special during which he interviews Gentlemen from years past. Also in that class of '84 were Tony Mack, now the mayor of Trenton, and Gerald Truehart, now a Trenton School Board member. This year, Gerald Truehart III will become the "Gentleman of a Gentleman."

Here is the complete list of 627 Mercer County Gentlemen, including the class of 2012. Below the list is Monday's episode of "Freedom" in which Jun King Walker (the first guest) spoke about the 30th ball and a history of the ceremony.

If you're a past Gentleman, call King Walker at (609) 675-4656 to appear on the show.

Mercer County Gentlemen Year by Year.pdf