Tuskegee Airmen featured at Fantasy of Flight

Fantasy of Flight will celebrate Black History Month in February 2012 by kicking off its Fourth Annual Legends & Legacies Symposium Series with a visit from famed World War II heroes, the Tuskegee Airmen, as well as a student essay contest honoring the aviators’ leadership, excellence, advocacy and determination (LEAD).

During this three-day limited engagement event called “They Dared to Fly,” the Tuskegee Airmen, the nation’s first African-American military aviators, will share their personal stories of what it was like to serve as a pilot in the military during segregated America. The pilots will share stories about their military service and unprecedented success despite operating in segregated units. Of the original group of nearly 1,000 trained pilots and 15,000 ground personnel that made up the Tuskegee Airmen, roughly 50 pilots and 200 ground crew are alive today.

“They Dared to Fly” will be held Thurs., Feb. 9, through Sat., Feb. 11, and will feature several open-forum/question-and-answer sessions as well as meet/greet autograph signings with several of the original Tuskegee Airmen. Symposium events are included in the attraction’s general admission price and are free for annual pass holders.

(l to r): Lt. Col. Hiram Mann, Lt. Col. Leo Gray, Lt. Col. Lee Archer and Dr. Roscoe Brown

In tribute to the Tuskegee Airmen, students in grades 4-12 are invited to participate in the “They Dared to Fly” essay contest. Using the principles of LEAD (leadership, excellence, advocacy and determination), students should describe how the Tuskegee Airmen achieved success or describe how they can use these values to achieve a personal goal of their own. Entries will be judged on overall content, including spelling, grammar, punctuation, legibility and penmanship (as applicable).

Prizes will be awarded to the first, second and third place winners in each grade category (grades 4-5, 6-8 and 9-12). First place will be awarded $100; second place, $75, and third place, $50. Entries must be postmarked or hand delivered prior to 5 p.m. on or before Feb. 20, 2012. Winners will be announced March 16, 2012.

For more information: FantasyOfFlight.com


  1. Rod Beck says

    The 1995 HBO film is a MUST SEE with a great cast – I have the DVD in my collection and is available from amazon for aviation movie buffs!

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