Pilots Reflect On Being Tuskegee Legacy Heirs | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

AMA Drone Report

Airborne-Monday

Airborne-Tuesday

Airborne-Wednesday

Airborne-Thursday

Airborne-Friday

Airborne-Unmanned w/AUVSI

Airborne On ANN

AMA 05.25.17

Airborne
05.22.17

Airborne
05.23.17

Airborne
05.24.17

Airborne
05.25.17

Airborne
05.26.17

Airborne-Unmanned 05.23.17

Airborne-YouTube

AMA 05.25.17

Airborne
05.22.17

Airborne
05.23.17

Airborne
05.24.17

Airborne
05.25.17

Airborne
05.26.17

Airborne-Unmanned 05.23.17

XPONENTIAL Innovation Preview -- www.allthingsunmanned.com

Sun, Feb 12, 2006

Pilots Reflect On Being Tuskegee Legacy Heirs

Something special began July 19, 1941. For the first time in the history of military aviation, blacks were given an opportunity to prove themselves in the sky.

The first black aviators began their flight training at Tuskegee Army Air Field, Ala., and went to the famed 99th Fighter Squadron.

The Tuskegee Airmen had to fight not only the Nazis, but the prejudices within their own military. Despite being allowed to fly, military aviation units were segregated by race.

Today, the heirs of their legacy take to the skies above Langley.

Captains Glenn Gonzales (pictured) and Alex Edwards are two black officers who fly F-15 Eagles in the 71st Fighter Squadron. While neither joined the Air Force because of the Tuskegee Airmen, they both agree hearing about the Tuskegee Airmen encouraged them to pursue their goals as pilots.

“I had an idea of who they were,” Captain Gonzales said. “But not to the extent of their contributions.”

He said it was his training at the Air Force Academy that first opened his eyes to their impact.

“One of the quotes we had to learn was in regards to the Tuskegee Airmen,” he said.

“To be honest, it seemed that these guys were just like all of us. They were Airmen like the rest of us.”

Captain Edwards first learned about the Tuskegee Airmen from the 1995 HBO movie, “The Tuskegee Airmen.”

“I thought it was a cool and inspiring story,” he said. “The more I learned about it, the more I knew that (flying) was what I wanted to do.”

By that time, he already knew he was going to fly. It was just a matter of how. His high school classmates just thought he was dreaming.

“There weren’t a lot of black people doing it,” he said. “They’d think, ‘I’d never seen a black pilot before, so I don’t think I’m going to see one now.’”

While racism still exists in 21st century America, Captains Edwards and Gonzales said that today’s Air Force welcomed them.

“The Tuskegee Airmen’s experience was totally different,” Captain Edwards said.
Both men said they’ve tried to live up to their legacy.

“I recruited for awhile,” Captain Edwards said. “I tried to get more African-Americans into the Air Force. I think some thought it was unattainable, but you don’t know what’s going to be hard until you try.”

“I want to be the best officer, best pilot, best Airman I can,” Captain Gonzales said. “Where ever that takes me, that’s where I’ll go.”

Captain Gonzales said the Tuskegee legacy was one that can be embraced by all Airmen.

“They were just like me and just like you. These guys were warfighters for our nation. They did their job, not with the intent to make a name for black aviators, but to be fighters for their country,” Captain Gonzales said.

“Their story shouldn’t be reserved just for February. Their story should be celebrated throughout the year,” he said. [ANN Salutes Staff Sgt. Thomas J. Doscher, 1st Fighter Wing Public Affairs]

FMI: www.af.mil

Advertisement

More News

Airborne-Unmanned 05.23.17: Courts Nix Model Regs, Autonymous Flt, WATT 300

Also: King Schools Update, Kittyhawk APP, Robird And Integrated Drone Solutions, ICAO Drone Tracking The unmanned community got a bit of a jolt late last week when the US Court of >[...]

AMA Drone Report 05.25.17: Court Kills FAA Model Drone Registration, DJI Spark!

Also: AMA Reacts To Court, FAA Reaction, AUVSI Reaction, Kittyhawk Flight Deck APP Score one for us little guys... As you may have heard, the U.S. Court of Appeals in Washington, D>[...]

Airborne 05.26.17: Elvis' Jetstar, ACJ330neo, Redbull's Muroya Aims For Chiba

Also: Revitalizing The Aero-Verse, NAAA's Concerns, 737 Air Tankers, SD Air & Space Museum, LAX Mishap, Avidyne After sitting on a runway in Roswell, NM for more than 30 years,>[...]

ANN's Daily Aero-Term (05.28.17): Security Notice (SECNOT)

Security Notice (SECNOT) A SECNOT is a request originated by the Air Traffic Security Coordinator (ATSC) for an extensive communications search for aircraft involved, or suspected >[...]

ASA Names Director Of Marketing

Brian Snider Has Worked For The Company Since 2008 Aviation Supplies & Academics, Inc. (ASA) is pleased to announce that Brian Snider has accepted the Director of Marketing pos>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2017 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC