On Saturday, Nov. 3, 2018, the story of the Tuskegee Airmen will be presented at the SUNY Corning Community College Health Education Center at 132 Denison Parkway East, Corning, N.Y., from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. Tuskegee Airman Pilot Herbert Thorpe will be in attendance. The event is open to the public with complimentary admission.
At the event, Mayor William Boland will honor the Airmen by proclaiming November 3, 2018, Tuskegee Airmen Day in Corning. Sky Moss, SUNY CCC Professor of American History, will discuss the historical context and impact the Tuskegee Airmen made beyond World War II. Michael Joseph will speak about his mission to preserve the Tuskegee Airmen legacy through motor sports. Joseph designed his first Tuskegee Airmen themed racecar after the World War II red tail fighter escort, the P-47 Thunderbolt, in order to appeal to younger generations. Jazz singer Sharada Shashidhar will perform World War II era songs.
Raul’s Rolling Tuskegee Thunder exhibit will also be available for attendees to view. The exhibit features authentic memorabilia, including personal effects, P-51 airplane gauges, books, and individual Airmen photographs, autographed art prints, model airplanes of various scales, statistical and factual information, photos, signed posters of the various Tuskegee Airmen chapter reunions and an autographed photo of the Congressional Gold Medal ceremony in Washington DC with 36 recipient signatures.
The Tuskegee Airmen were a group of African American military pilots, navigators, bombardiers, and instructors who fought in World War II. They were involved in the Tuskegee Experiment: the Army Air Corps program created to train blacks to fly combat aircraft. During this time, many blacks were still subject to Jim Crow laws, denying them military leadership and skilled training. The Airmen helped pave the way for the inclusion of blacks into the military.