Oklahoma City, OK 73105
For Immediate Release: November 22, 2016
Sen. Anastasia Pittman is joined by Ed Woodward Jr., (L) Charles
B Hall chapter Vice-President and Mahlon Smith, (R) Charles
B Hall Chapter President.
Senator Anastasia Pittman is presented an honorary membership
in the Tuskegee Airmen Charles B. Hall Chapter of Oklahoma City.
Pictured left to right are: Mahlon Smith, Thomas Dubose, Robert
Phillips, Karl Wilburn, Sen. Pittman, Duboise Gooden, Ed Woodward
Jr., and Tom Harmon.
Sen. Pittman granted honorary Tuskegee Airman membership
State Senator Anastasia A. Pittman became an honorary member of
Oklahoma City’s Charles B. Hall Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen
during the Alpha Phi Alpha 5th annual Veterans’ Day program
on November 3.
The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African American military aviators
when Tuskegee University was awarded the U.S. Army Air Corps contract
to help train America’s first black military aviators. The
all-Black 332nd Fighter Group was comprised originally of four fighter
squadrons, the 99th, the 100th, the 301st and the 302nd. In the
years spanning from 1941 to 1946, approximately 1,000 African American
pilots were trained at the Tuskegee University facility. The Airmen's
success in escorting bombers during World War II is a record unmatched
by any other fighter group.
The honorary membership presentation was led by Mahlon Smith, President
of the local Charles B. Hall Chapter. He said Pittman’s contributions
to honor and preserve the memory of the Tuskegee Airmen were noted
by those in the organization.
“The granting of an honorary membership to Senator Pittman
was an easy decision because of her continued support for promoting
the legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen, and support for youth aerospace
education,” Smith said.
Pittman also authored a Senate resolution and presented it earlier
this year in the Senate chamber recognizing the 75th anniversary
of the Tuskegee Airmen, and honoring the three original Oklahoma
Tuskegee Airmen. The resolution acknowledged Faythe A. McGinnis
of class 42F of Muskogee, Oklahoma as the first Tuskegee Airman
to be killed in a training accident; Charles B. Hall of class 42F
of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma as the first African American Tuskegee
Airman to shoot down an enemy aircraft; and Robert C. Smith, of
class 45D of Muskogee, Oklahoma as a prominent and well-respected
community leader in his hometown.
“I am humbled to be recognized as an honorary member of the
Charles B. Hall Chapter,” Pittman said. “These airmen
fought with a vision of independence for their country, as well
as their future children and grandchildren, during a time where
they also faced segregation and oppressive laws. I am proud of their
commitment to their country and the integration of our armed forces.
The heritage and legacy these airmen exhibit is to be honored and
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