FORT WAYNE—The Fort Wayne Parks and Recreation Neighborhood Program is scheduled to welcome famed World War II Veteran and Tuskegee Air Leslie Howard during a special dinner and presentation from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., April 26,at Weisser Park Youth Center, 802 Eckart St.
The Tuskegee Airmen are one of the most famed and storied military units in the history of the U.S. Armed Forces. Initially conceived as an experiment to test whether African Americans could be combat pilots, the all-black Tuskegee Airmen went on to become the nation’s top bomber escort squadron winning numerous accolades and amassing an unparalleled reputation for their prowess in the air.
Their exploits have been the subject of scores of books, documentaries and films. There reputation in the air became mythic, with the story commonly being told that the Tuskegee Airmen fighter escort group never lost a bomber it escorted. Military historians, however, later revised that figure to 27, with 15 of them during a July 18, 1944 air battle in which the Germans sent 300 fighters to attack the group. Still that total of 27 lost bombers was far less than the 46 average bombers lost by other fighter escorts during the war, earning the Tuskegee the reputation as the best group of pilots in the U.S. Army Air Corps/U.S. Air Force history.
In addition to sharing his life story, Tuskegee Airman Edwards is scheduled to show clips from the documentary “Double Victory,” which chronicles the history of the Tuskegee Airmen.
The event is free and open to the entire family.
For more information, including to RSVP for meal preparation, call Michael Ayers at (260) 427-6700 or (260) 479-8588.