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Tuskegee Airmen

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NEWS
July 18, 2008
How is patriotism measured? Is it in how well one recites the Pledge of Allegiance? In whether the American flag is permanently attached to the siding of one's home? Or in how close to perfect your attendance has been for each and every election (yes, even the local fire district's)? Service to country has been a reliable yardstick for centuries, military service in particular. By that standard, Philadelphia's streets this weekend will be walked by some convention attendees who are among the most patriotic Americans this country has known.
NEWS
July 23, 1998 | By Ralph Cipriano, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
The pilots in the room, young and old, were there to celebrate the legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen, the black military aviators who, during the segregated days of World War II, escorted heavy bombers 200 times over Europe, and never lost a single aircraft to enemy attack. The success of the 996 black aviators trained at a U.S. Army airfield near Tuskegee, Ala., cleared the way for the desegregation of the U.S. military, enacted in a July 26, 1948, executive order from President Harry S. Truman.
NEWS
April 11, 2000 | By Rusty Pray, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Nathaniel C. Stewart, 77, a retired pharmacist for the City of Philadelphia who was a pilot with the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II, died Thursday of prostate cancer at his home in Germantown. As a second lieutenant in the Army Air Corps, Mr. Stewart served with the famed unit of black aviators from 1942 until he was injured in a crash in 1944. Mr. Stewart was flying a P-40, a single-engine fighter, on a training mission when the plane's engine malfunctioned. "He used to tell us that his engine tapped him on the shoulder and said, 'Lt. Stewart, I'm going to quit right here and now at 6,000 feet.
NEWS
May 9, 2006 | By Jeff Price INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
They commanded the room as easily as they did the controls of their Mustang P-51 fighters during World War II. The three Tuskegee Airmen, America's first black military pilots, sat up front yesterday at the Media Theater in Media while a film featuring their commentary played to a packed house of 600 instant fans, mostly middle and high school students, but politicians and veterans, too. The film, combined with a lesson plan, is being offered to...
ENTERTAINMENT
November 3, 2011 | By Mia Mask, For The Inquirer
When you think about World War II, military leaders such as George S. Patton and Douglas MacArthur often come to mind. But how much do you know about the Tuskegee Airmen? Now's your chance to learn about the first African American military pilots, who fought valiantly against fascism during the war. The African American Museum in Philadelphia is offering a free screening Thursday night of Double Victory, a new documentary by filmmaker George Lucas about the recruitment, training, and combat missions of the Tuskegee Airmen.
NEWS
August 26, 2000 | By Lauren Mayk, INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
When Roscoe Dabney and Ben Hardy met on a train more than 50 years ago, the two men - one a private first class from Lakewood and the other a master sergeant from Indiana - became fast friends. They went on to become military classmates in Texas and decorated pilots trained at Tuskegee Institute in Alabama during World War II in a premier program that produced a cadre of men who came to be known as the Tuskegee Airmen. Although the two corresponded over the years, it was without planning that they ended up living across the street from each other in Willingboro about 30 years ago. Today, Dabney and Hardy are among four Tuskegee Airmen from Burlington County who are being honored at a golf classic at Rancocas Golf Club in Willingboro.
NEWS
September 21, 2012 | By Aubrey Whelan, Inquirer Staff Writer
Henry L. Moore never stopped moving. Born in tiny Ocilla, Ga., in 1921, he was out by 19, after graduating at the top of Ocilla High's Class of 1940. He moved to Newark, N.J., to escape the poverty and racism that had marked his childhood. By 1942, he was on a bus full of draftees en route to Fort Dix, and by 1944, he was in Italy, working on B-25 bombers as a member of the Tuskegee Airmen - the first black aviators to serve in the U.S. military. Then it was off to West Virginia State University, where he earned a physics degree, and a career as a naval researcher.
NEWS
May 11, 2013 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
John H. Grant Sr., 85, of Philadelphia, an aircraft mechanic with the famed Tuskegee Airmen, died Monday, May 6, at the hospice unit at Women's Medical Hospital after a short illness. Mr. Grant graduated with honors from Tuskegee (Ala.) Institute in 1949 with a major in aircraft technology. He served in the Army as an aircraft mechanic based in Guam, maintaining tplanes for the airmen, the first African Americans to take to the skies on behalf of the United States. He told his son, John Jr., that he believed the aviators never received the respect they deserved.
BUSINESS
July 1, 2011 | By Linda Loyd, Inquirer Staff Writer
They were trailblazers and gave new meaning to "the sky's the limit. " They were the first black U.S. military pilots in World War II, known as the Tuskegee Airmen. Fifty photographs of the Tuskegee Airmen, who fought America's enemies abroad while facing racial discrimination at home, opened Thursday at Philadelphia International Airport. The exhibit, which will be on display through June in Terminal A-East, is a photo essay of seven decades of aviation history. On hand were four original Tuskegee Airmen, named for the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, where they trained, an all-black unit of World War II pilots, navigators, bombardiers, mechanics, and others.
NEWS
February 16, 1989 | By Donald Scott, Special to The Inquirer
During World War II, a group of black fighter pilots gained the respect of the nation as they flew heroic combat missions. By the time the war was over, the Tuskegee Airmen had destroyed 261 enemy aircraft and had won a total of 95 Distinguished Flying Cross medals. At least 66 of the 900 pilots trained at Tuskegee were shot down and died during missions to stop Hitler's German army, but six of the world-famous airmen were among those honored Sunday at the Willow Grove Naval Air Station in observance of African-American History Month.
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NEWS
September 5, 2014 | By Vernon Clark, Inquirer Staff Writer
Curtis Thomas Sr., 100, a retired electrician who brought nearly two dozen others into the trade and who was a block captain in Germantown for 40 years, died Thursday, Aug. 28, at Dresher Hill Health & Rehabilitation Center. He was the father of State Rep. W. Curtis Thomas. Mr. Thomas, who served with the Tuskegee Airmen, was one of the first African Americans to work for Philadelphia Gas Works, where he was an electrician for more than 40 years, said his son. He also installed the Christmas lights at his church, Jones Tabernacle A.M.E.
NEWS
February 27, 2014 | By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer
  Long after he piloted a plane that transported first lady Eleanor Roosevelt to the skies above the Tuskegee Institute, C. Alfred "Chief" Anderson sometimes sidestepped the limelight. The aviator, born in Bridgeport, Montgomery County, taught hundreds of Tuskegee Airmen to fly, and he sat appreciatively through the frequent award ceremonies but at times grew weary. He once sent his preteen granddaughters to accept an award while he waited in the car. So what would the man known as the "Father of Black Aviation" say about the new U.S. Postal Service stamp soon to be issued in his honor?
NEWS
October 14, 2013 | By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer
Mary Groce didn't know she had a great-uncle who could be worthy of history books until she opened an old cardboard box. The 63-year-old was rifling through family memorabilia with a relative when she came across the photo of a handsome, crisply dressed man gripping the steering wheel in a cockpit. "That's Uncle Emory?" she said, stunned, to her cousin Aileen Ryan. "He's black. " Groce looks anything but. As she dug deeper, Groce found the outline of a life that had been hidden from her family for a generation.
NEWS
May 27, 2013
By John C. Church Jr. After seeing the film 42 , I was reminded of the quote that adorns Jackie Robinson's gravestone: "A life is not important except in the impact it has on other lives. " This Memorial Day I'll be thinking of those who had an impact. That includes friends with whom I served, but also some others. When I met Cpl. Thomas Turner, a World War II Marine, he was wearing his Presidential Gold Medal. Turner, a Montford Point Marine, volunteered for service after President Franklin D. Roosevelt barred the military from refusing employment on the basis of race, creed, color, or national origin.
NEWS
May 11, 2013 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
John H. Grant Sr., 85, of Philadelphia, an aircraft mechanic with the famed Tuskegee Airmen, died Monday, May 6, at the hospice unit at Women's Medical Hospital after a short illness. Mr. Grant graduated with honors from Tuskegee (Ala.) Institute in 1949 with a major in aircraft technology. He served in the Army as an aircraft mechanic based in Guam, maintaining tplanes for the airmen, the first African Americans to take to the skies on behalf of the United States. He told his son, John Jr., that he believed the aviators never received the respect they deserved.
TRAVEL
February 18, 2013 | By Michael Schuman, For The Inquirer
TUSKEGEE, Ala. - There is only one college or university designated a National Historic Site by the U.S. Congress, and it is not Harvard or Yale or Princeton. It is the Tuskegee Institute, now Tuskegee University. History is rich on this campus, and the ghosts of its storied faculty and alumni are ever present. These include founder Booker T. Washington, botanist George Washington Carver, author Ralph Ellison, and Daniel "Chappie" James, the first African American four-star general.
NEWS
January 12, 2013
Jean McCoy Curtis, 88, of Chestnut Hill, a former secretary and administrative assistant who was the wife of a Tuskegee Airman, died Friday, Jan. 4, of respiratory failure at St. Joseph's Villa in Flourtown. Born in Pittsburgh, Mrs. Curtis graduated from Peabody High School in 1942. Three years later, she married her longtime sweetheart, William Johnston Curtis, one of the Tuskegee Airmen, a pioneering group of black Army pilots during World War II. The couple settled in the West Mount Airy section of Philadelphia in 1953.
NEWS
November 28, 2012 | By Bonnie L. Cook, Inquirer Staff Writer
Wilson C. Anderson, 87, who served as a radio mechanic with the Tuskegee Airmen during World War II and later was a Philadelphia city employee for 35 years, died Wednesday, Nov. 21, of a stroke at Roxborough Memorial Hospital. Born and raised in Philadelphia, Mr. Anderson attended South Philadelphia High School, dropped out to enter the service, and later earned his GED. He was awarded a bachelor's degree in finance from Villanova University in 1952, and also received a graduate certificate from the Fels Institute of Government.
NEWS
November 13, 2012
Retired Lt. Col. Herbert Eugene Carter, 95, one of the original Tuskegee Airmen who broke color barriers in World War II, has died. Tuskegee Mayor Johnny Ford said Mr. Carter died Thursday afternoon at East Alabama Medical Center. The Tuskegee Airmen were the first black aviators in the U.S. military. During World War II they were trained as a segregated unit in central Alabama at Tuskegee Institute, now Tuskegee University. Mr. Carter was in the first group that trained for the 99th Fighter Squadron.
NEWS
October 26, 2012 | By Vernon Clark, Inquirer Staff Writer
Thomas H. Mayfield Jr., 95, one of the original Tuskegee Airmen and a retired special-education teacher in Pemberton Township, died Friday, Oct. 19, at Marcella Nursing and Rehab Center in Burlington. Mr. Mayfield, a longtime resident of Willingboro, achieved the rank of lieutenant colonel in the Army, serving in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. He earned special recognition as a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, a group selected for training in an Army Air Corps program that taught black men to fly and maintain aircraft at the racially segregated Tuskegee Army Air Field in Alabama in the early 1940s.
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