March 31, 2009 |
George D. Thompson, 93, of Philadelphia, former host of a Jenkintown radio show, died of complications from a broken hip Wednesday at Mercy Fitzgerald Hospital in Darby. After a career with the U.S. Postal Service, said his daughter, Juanita, he produced and directed George Thompson and Friends, a program of sacred music on WIBF-FM, in the 1980s. In 1941, Mr. Thompson enlisted in the Army Air Corps, trained as a mechanic, and was assigned to Tuskegee (Ala.) Army Airfield to work with the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African American flying unit in World War II. "When they realized that he was an accomplished musician," his daughter said, "they switched him from being a mechanic" to being a trombone player in the Airmen's band.
October 6, 2010 |
HARRY W. BOSTON, a teacher in Philadelphia public schools for more than 30 years, an Air Force veteran of World War II and a devoted churchman whose lusty voice was raised in praise at Miller Memorial Baptist Church for more than 70 years, died Thursday. He would have been 86 tomorrow. He lived in Mount Airy. Harry taught at Kenderton Elementary, Lingelbach Elementary, the Eleanor C. Emlen School and Benjamin Franklin High School. Even after he retired in 1984, he continued as an educator, teaching for four more years at the Sanctuary Christian Academy, founded by Bishop Audrey Bronson.
August 25, 1995 |
For Bob Williams, the line between sanity and insanity began in Evansville, Ind. Williams, an Ottumwa, Iowa, native, had waited for months to train as one of the first black Army Air Corps aviators. As he and other aspiring black airmen headed south in 1942 for an airfield in Tuskegee, Ala., they traveled in an integrated railroad car. When they reached the Mason-Dixon Line at Evansville, the conductor announced that Williams and his fellow African-American passengers would have to relocate to the "colored only" car. "And we dutifully got our things and moved," said Williams, now 72 but no less amazed at the irony of incident.
May 26, 2010
Raymond V. Haysbert Sr., 90, whose Parks Sausage Co. in 1969 became the first black-owned business in the United States to go public, died Monday at a Baltimore hospital after suffering from congestive heart failure, his son Brian Haysbert said. Born in poverty, Mr. Haysbert became a member of the famed Tuskegee Airmen, serving in Africa and Italy before settling in Baltimore. There, he joined the company started by Henry Parks that became well-known throughout the Northeast by advertisements featuring a hungry boy asking, "More Parks Sausages, Mom - please!"
January 29, 2012 |
George Lucas, the legendary director of the Star Wars saga, should have taken a few down-to-earth meetings with master storyteller Bertram Levy before he made Red Tails , the story of the African American pilots known today as the Tuskegee Airmen. Critics have not been kind to Lucas' World War II saga. They complain about the depth of the characters and the cliche-ridden dialogue. Most damning are the concerns that the movie doesn't delve deeply enough into the battles against segregation that the airmen had to wage just to help defend their country in wartime.
August 9, 2011 |
'It's Top Gun with black pilots. " So Terrence Howard describes with a punchy tagline his film, Red Tails , a WWII actioner about the famed Tuskegee Airmen, the first group of African American fighter pilots in the U.S. armed forces. Conceived by George Lucas and in development for nearly 25 years, the Anthony Hemingway-helmed Red Tails is due Jan. 20, 2012. It is billed as a passionate statement about civil rights but also - or given marketing needs, above all - an epic Hollywood blockbuster filled with hair-raising set pieces.
February 18, 2013 |
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.
September 29, 2001 |
Several hundred mourners gathered yesterday at a school gymnasium here in Burlington County to pay tribute to LeRoy Wilton Homer Jr., 36, a reserved man who was at home in the skies. When a friend and fellow aviator told the standing-room-only crowd about the great times the two had in their 20s - flying all over the world with the Air Force, spending weekends at the Jersey Shore and in Philadelphia - there were smiles. And when one of Homer's sisters read letters from his family - his mother, a brother, and six other sisters - about how Homer, because he was constantly outnumbered by women, was often "quiet out of necessity," there was laughter.
January 20, 2012
TERRENCE HOWARD didn't do much research for his role in "Red Tails. " Didn't have to. The movie's story, of the World War II Tuskegee Airmen, was one that he knew by heart. "I'd written reports about them in 1974, 1975. For my dad. That's how my daddy would discipline us," said Howard. "My dad was big on education, so I grew up knowing about the black pilots who shot down Nazi jets, and flew the P-51 Mustang. For me, the Mustang was always the airplane, not the car. " Howard admitted he needed the discipline of his dad's informal home schooling.
October 8, 1998 |
Phyllis Elaine McQuiller Proctor, 76, a church volunteer and former teacher, died of heart failure Monday at her home in West Chester, where she had lived for 30 years. Mrs. Proctor had been active in the community as a teacher in the pre-school program, Head Start, at the West Chester Community Center, which had honored her in recent years. She was known for her large doll collection and was prepared at any time to bake a cake for community functions and fund-raisering events at Bethel A.M.E.