Tuskegee Airman Speaks at Museum
During World War II, Lt. Col. Alex Jefferson was one of the famed Tuskegee Airmen, the African-American pilots who battled discrimination to become one of the most decorated units in the Army Air Corps, and were renowned for never losing a bomber they were assigned to protect.
Lt. Col. Jefferson graduated from pilot training at Tuskegee Army Air Field in January 1944 and flew 18 combat missions as a P-51 fighter pilot from Ramitelli, Italy. In August 1944 he was shot down by ground fire while strafing radar stations on the coast of Southern France. Captured by German troops, he spent nine months as a POW. Liberated by American forces in April 1945, Lt. Col. Jefferson visited the infamous concentration camp at Dachau, where he witnessed at firsthand the atrocities committed by the Nazis.
A noted speaker, Lt. Col. Jefferson visited Oshkosh from his home in Detroit to share his memories of flying as a Tuskegee Airman during World War II. His presentation was held at 6:30 p.m. in the Museum's Eagle Hangar, which houses a rare North American T-6 trainer - one of just two known to exist that was actually used by the Tuskegee Airmen. An archive of the broadcast is available below.