Original Tuskegee Airmen Join HU Students for “Red Tails” Viewing
|Chief Master Sgt. Grant Williams and Master Sgt. Ezra Hill and T.J. Spann|
Hampton University students from the Scripps Howard School of Journalism and Communication and the School of Engineering and Technology, viewed the movie “Red Tails” as guest of the Tidewater Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen Inc.
Original Tuskegee Airmen, Chief Master Sgt. Grant Williams and Master Sgt. Ezra Hill, welcomed students at a private screening sponsored by NASA Langley Research Center, the City of Hampton and HU, hosted by Cinebistro at Peninsula Town Center.
“Red Tails,” starring Terrence Howard and Cuba Gooding, Jr., is inspired by the true events of the Tuskegee Airmen that served during World War II.
Following the screening, the airmen talked with students, answering questions and sharing their personal stories.
“It’s a different world now. They claimed colored people were stupid and couldn’t handle machines,” stated Williams. “In the end, this group of colored soldiers destroyed or damaged more than 400 aircraft, brought home more than 750 Medals of Honor, 58 Purple Hearts, three Presidential Citations, one Legion of Merit, and one Red Star of Yugoslavia.”
The movie and the presence of the Tuskegee Airmen provided students with a history lesson in race-relations, the history of aviation and the role African-Americans had in WWII.
“This was a great movie, it really taught me that you have to be focused and excellent in all that you do,” stated Michael Oyebanjo, a junior aviation air traffic control major.
“It was very inspirational to see what African-Americans had to go through to press through the color barrier during the war,” stated Henry Norris Jr., a junior aviation major. “It made me appreciate everything. They opened the door for young aviation majors. All African-American young men and women need to see it.”
Students and faculty had an opportunity to talk more intimately with the airmen following the presentation. The Tidewater Tuskegee Airmen provided a collection of memorabilia to show guest following the movie.
|HU students enjoy the movie.|
|HU Aviation Majors|
|Chief Master Sgt. Grant Williams talks with HU guest.|