Entries by Stan Stokes

Tuskegee’s First Five

Tuskegee’s First Five Tuskegee’s first five cadets to receive their wings and become official US Army Air Force pilots were in Class 42C-SE. This group of black pilots completed their pilot training on March 6, 1942, at Tuskegee Army Air Field, in Tuskegee, Alabama. Of the 13 original cadets, five graduated (from left): Capt. Benjamin […]

Tuskegee Airman Alton Ballard

Tuskegee Airman Alton Ballard was a fighter pilot with the famous 332nd fighter Group – the “Red Tails”. In 1942, Alton Ballard was a new cadet in class 43-H-SE at Tuskegee Army Air Field in Tuskegee, Alabama. In primary training, he had instruction flying PT-17 Stearman biplanes. He and the class then moved into flying […]

Tuskegee Airman Bob Ashby

Tuskegee Airman Bob Ashby Bob Ashby enlisted in the Army Air Corps at age seventeen as a candidate for the Aviation Cadet program. He was called to active duty in August 1944. Bob as was assigned to Keesler Field, Mississippi for basic training and testing for entry into the Aviation Cadet Program. In December 1944 […]

Tuskegee Airmen Andrew Turner and John Briggs

Tuskegee Airmen Andrew Turner and John Briggs Andrew Turner Andrew Turner enlisted into the US Army on October 8, 1942 and was a member of class 42-I-SE at Tuskegee, Alabama. He received his wings and was inducted into the US Army Air Force on Oct. 9, 1942.  He deployed into WWII with the 100th Fighter […]

General Benjamin O. Davis, Jr.

General Benjamin O. Davis, Jr. Benjamin O. Davis Jr. entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., in July 1932. He was shunned by his classmates for the entire time he was there. He persevered through the next 4 years and graduated in June 1936 with a commission as a second lieutenant of infantry.  […]

George “Spanky” Roberts

Tuskegee Airman George “Spanky” Roberts Tuskegee Airman George “Spanky” Roberts had already received his pilot’s license in the Civilian Pilot Training Program when he entered flight training in the first class at Tuskegee, Alabama.  It was July of 1941 and the US Army wasn’t convinced that young black men would make good military pilots. There […]

Tuskegee Airman Charles McGee

Brigadier General Charles McGee Tuskegee Airman Charles McGee enlisted in the United States Army on October 26, 1942 as a pilot cadet. He received his wings becoming an official pilot in the US Army Air Corps graduating in Class 43-F on June 30, 1943. By February 1944, he was stationed in Italy with the 332nd […]

Tuskegee Airman Walter Palmer

Tuskegee Airman Walter Palmer Born in 1921, 1st Lt. Walter J.A. Palmer became a US Army Air Force pilot  in 1943 graduating in class SE-43-F. He flew 158 combat missions over Italy and Germany during World War II. He was assigned to the 100th Fighter Squadron of the 332nd Fighter Group. In February 1944, the […]

Tuskegee Airman Alexander Jefferson

Tuskegee Airman Alexander Jefferson Originally from Detroit, Alexander attained a bachelor’s degree in chemistry and biology from Clark College in Atlanta and in September 1942, was sworn in to the United States Army Reserves. He volunteered for flight school but was not accepted, so he began his graduate studies at Howard University in Washington D.C. […]