DOCUMENTED ORIGINAL TUSKEGEE AIRMEN
To learn about DOTAs who are deceased, visit the Lonely Eagles Biographies page.
Major L. Anderson, III
Major L. Anderson was drafted at the age of 18 in 1943 and entered the Army Air Corps. He received basic training at Keesler Air Field, Biloxi, MS and trained as an aircraft sheet metal worker at The Air Force Technical School, Chanute Field, IL. His assignment was to repair aircraft bodies, bullet hole punctures and damage to B-25 bomber aircraft. After 30 months of service, the War ended and Major L. Anderson, III was honorably discharged “at the convenience of the government.”
He attended Howard University until his marriage in June of 1948. He later earned a degree in Business Administration from Federal City College in Washington, DC. Major L. Anderson, III was an employee of the US Postal Inspection service until his retirement in 1984.
William T. Fauntroy, Jr.
William T. Fauntroy, Jr. was sworn into the US Army Air Corps reserve in 1944. After completing basic training at Keesler Field, MS, he was assigned to Tuskegee Army Airfield for training as a single engine pilot. Before his flight training was completed, World War II ended and William Fauntroy, Jr. was discharged as an Aviation Cadet in 1945.
In 1946, William enrolled in Howard University’s School of Engineering and Architecture where he met, and later married, Camilla H. Bradford – the love of his life. In 1961, Mr. William T. Fauntroy, Jr. became the first African-American Civil Engineer hired by the National Capital Transportation Agency (NCTA), predecessor to the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority (WMATA). He was the Urban Planner for the portion of the subway system that was built in Washington, DC. Mr. Fauntroy, Jr. retired from WMATA in 1984. He and Camilla were together for 61 years. He attends New Bethel Baptist Church and resides with his son, Burllock V. Wells, in Washington, DC.
Carl C. Johnson
Carl Johnson joined the US Army in 1945, was accepted as an aviation cadet and assigned to aviation training at Tuskegee Army Air Field in Class 46-C. He became ill during his field training and upon his recovery, Carl was sent to Enid Army Air Field, OK and then to Lockbourne Army Air Force, Columbus, OH where he joined the 617th Bomber Squadron (M) 477th Bombardment Group Composite.
Colonel Johnson’s thirty years of service in the US Army included World War II and the Korean and Vietnam wars. Colonel Johnson flew fixed and rotary winged aircraft as well as serving as the Commander of a US Army Aviation Battalion in the Republic of South Korea. Upon retirement from the US Army, he held positions within the Department of Defense and the Federal Aviation Administration.
Herbert H. “Herb” Jones
In 1943, Herb left Washington, DC to enroll in the Coffey School of Aviation in Chicago, IL. The Coffey School participated in the civilian pilot training program and provided students with an opportunity to become aviation cadets at Tuskegee Army Air Corps. His studies there were interrupted in 1944 when he was inducted into the US Army as an Aviation Cadet at Keelser Field, MS. He was then transferred to Tuskegee Army Airfield where he started pilot training but was later assigned overseas to artillery service during the Italian campaign of World War II.
After the War, Herb resumed his flight training and received a commercial license with an instructor’s rating. After leaving active duty, he joined the Air Force Reserve and completed flight training.
Along with a partner, Herb took over the operation of Columbia Air Center, Croom, Maryland, thus becoming one of the first Civilian Aviation Authority licensed airports operated by African-Americans.
People honor, admire and pay tribute to Herbert Jones for his unselfish devotion – inspiring Youth in Aviation.
Dr. Nancy Leftenant-Colon graduated from New York’s Lincoln School of Nursing in 1941. She then tried to sign up for the Armed Forces but was informed that the military was not accepting Black nurses. Nancy persevered. In 1945, she became one of the Black nurses accepted into the Army Reserve Corps. At that time, there was a shortage of white nurses and the military was “desperate.” In 1947, Nancy Leftenant-Colon put in an application to become one of the first Black nurses in Air Force. Although she became the first Black nurse in the regular army in 1948 and was transferred to the Air Force in 1949, her Flight Nurse application was not accepted until 1952.
Dr. Nancy Leftenant-Colon served as a Flight Nurse in the Korean and Vietnam Wars. During these conflicts, she set up hospital wards in Japan and in active war zones. She was credited with saving many lives during those wars. In 1956, Nancy retired from Flight Nursing. Major Nancy Leftenant-Colon retired from the military in 1965.
Nancy became a school nurse in New York. She is an initial member of the East Coast Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. having joined at its inception in 1973. Within the Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. she served in the capacity of National Treasurer, First Vice-President and as the first female President of the Organization. She has received numerous awards including honorary degrees from the Tuskegee University and Mt. St. Vincent College in Riverdale, New York.
Lemuel A. Lewie, Jr.
Lemuel A. Lewie, Jr. received a BS degree in Chemistry from Allen University in 1941. That same year, he volunteered for pilot training and passed all of his tests. He was not accepted into the Pilot Training Program; however, he was drafted the next year. In 1943, Lemuel A. Lewie, Jr. was sent to Keesler Field, MS for Pre-aviation Cadet Testing and Basic Training. In 1944, he was sent to Tuskegee Institute for college training and to Tuskegee Army Air Field (TAAF) for pilot training. After completing bombardier training that same year, Lemuel A. Lewie, Jr. was commissioned as a 2nd Lieutenant.
His experiences and excellent training developed a wide range of intellectual and highly technical skills: chemical warfare, administration, pilot, radio communications, aerial gunnery, and bombardier. His experiences even included service as a pay agent for the Corps of Engineers at Tuskegee Air Force Base. Although Tuskegee served as Headquarters, his military training extended to Atlanta University and several military bases across the country.
For some reason, Lemuel’s records were lost. President Truman at Ft Bragg, NC, finally granted First Lieutenant commission to him in 1946. A Captain’s rating was promised on the condition that he return to active duty status. His tenure from 1941-1946 was active; he served in the Reserve from 1946-1957.
Lemuel A. Lewie, Jr. is a retired education, President of his own company (Lewie Consolidated Enterprises), a horticulturalist, civic activist, world traveler and family man. He taught science, mathematics and textile design at Carver Vocational Technical High School for 28 years. Carver was among the top Vo-Tech schools in the country. He has a Master of Science in Biology from Atlanta University, Georgia and excellent and varied training from Tuskegee as an airman and more. This multitalented man shared his many skills, experiences and interests with his students and community groups.
Lemuel and his wife, Reva, share a passion for travel and have enjoyed visiting all of the states except Oregon and all of the continents except Antarctica (attempted 2004, but weather prevented it). Love for family and activities with their grandchildren remain the highlight of their golden years.
Lawyer A. Martin
Lawyer A. Martin was drafted and selected to go to Johnson Field, NC as an Aviation Cadet. Shortly thereafter, the War ended and he was separated from the service “at the convenience of the government.” Lawyer left the military and established a successful consulting business – Evaluation Technologies, Inc. (ETI). He served as its President and CEO for twenty years. He sold the business and continues to serve as Senior Executive, CENTECH Group, Inc.
Lawyer A. Martin is one of the charter members (membership card #015) of the East Coast Chapter, Tuskegee Airmen, Inc. He was instrumental in the establishment of this organization in May 1973 when the Certificate of Incorporation and official charter were issued.
James W. “Jim” Pryde, Sr.
James W. Pryde was sworn into the US Army Air Corps at 171/2 years of age and was inducted as a pre-aviation cadet in 1944. After basic training, he attended Radio Operator Mechanic and Aerial Gunnery School in anticipation of assignment to the 477th Medium Bombardment Group (Colored). When World War II ended, all of the gunnery students were separated into groups of four and his group went to Chanute Field where Jim serviced as a Line Radio Mechanic and flew approximately 1600 hours as a Radio Operator on multi-engine aircraft.
After his discharge, Jim Pryde went back to night school, earned a GED, attended Miner Teachers’ College and worked for 30 years at the National Security Agency (NSA). He joined the Armed Forces Security Agency in 1950 as a communications clerk. When it was discovered he could read automatic Morse tape, he was transferred to a Signals Analysis Section, where he became a telemetry analyst.
Jim Pryde spent two years on detail to the Staff of the Assistant Secretary of Defense, and served as the Director of the Defense Special Missile and Astronautics (now Aerospace) Center (DEFSMAC) from 1978 to 1980. In 1980, he served as the NSA representative to the Department of Defense and in 1981, served as Assistant Deputy Director of Administration at NSA.
James W. Pryde’s recent experiences in the field of non-profits include: Treasurer, Board member, Chairman of the Board, and President of the Phoenix Society, the NSA Retirement organization. He was a founding board member of the National Cryptologic Museum Foundation.
After his retirement, Jim served as COO for East Coast and European Operations for a systems engineering and software corporation – the Corporate Board elected him to the position of Corporate Vice President after one year in the corporation. An active member of the East Coast Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., Jim has held many executive positions including executive committee member, member of the Speakers Bureau and chapter board member to the National body. James W. Pryde was inducted into the National Security Agency Hall of Honor in 2006.
Edward J. Talbert, Jr.
Edward J. Talbert, Jr. entered Howard University in 1940. Three years later, he was drafted into the Army Air Corps and spent his military career in the European Theater of Operations. After the War, Edward Talbert, Jr. returned to Howard University and joined the Air Reserve Officers Program. After attending a two-week program at West Point, Edward J. Talbert signed up for active duty in the Air Reserve Program. He was assigned to the 332nd Fighter Wing as supply officer in Base Supply Operations from 1948-1950. His Commanding officer was Col. B O. Davis, Jr.
Major Edward Talbert left the military shortly after the Air Force integrated. He matriculated at Miner Teachers’ College, received a Masters Degree in Library Science from Catholic University and spent the next 25+ years serving DC and Maryland in the Field of Library Science. Major Talbert was the first Black Librarian to open a branch library in Prince Georges’ County, Maryland.
Dr. Ivan Ware
Ivan Ware joined the Enlisted Reserve Corps in 1942 and reported for active duty in 1943. His 3420th Ordinance MAM Co. landed in England in November 1943 and on Omaha Beach on July 3, 1944. They earned Battle Stars for service in Normandy and in Northern France, where they kept the wheels rolling and the guns firing on the Red Ball Highway. They also served in Luxemburg, Belgium and Germany. His unit was chosen for occupation duty in Germany, and he returned home after 32 months of Foreign Service with the rank of Staff Sergeant.
He entered Howard University in 1946 in the first class of Air Force ROTC, where he served as Cadet Battalion Commander. He received his BA in Government, cum laude and was commissioned 2nd Lieutenant, USAFR in 1948 and immediately reported to the 332nd Composite Wing at Lockbourne Air Base where he joined the 332nd Motor Vehicle Squad.
In 1949, Ivan became Training Officer at the Food Service School, Fort Hood, TX and earned his regular Air Force Commission in 1951. He served as a Food Service Officer and as Commander of his Food Service Squadron in Korea. After two tours of duty with the Air Reserve Center program as a Training Officer, he was assigned to the 7101st Air Base Wing, Wiesbaden, Germany as Director of Military Training.
He completed the Air War College Correspondence Program and the National Security Program, was Professor of Aerospace Studies at Howard University and served as analyst, then Assistant Director, Auxiliary Enterprises at the University. Dr. Ware earned his MBA at Howard University and his MPA and DPA from the University of Southern California; he retired from Howard University in 1974 after 30 years of service.
Dr. Ware is a charter member (membership card #025) of the East Coast Chapter, Tuskegee Airmen Inc. He has served two consecutive terms as Chapter secretary, two terms as First Vice President, and three terms as Director. He is our current (2007) Parliamentarian.William G. “Bill” Wilson
In September 1945, William Wilson was drafted in the service and sent to Fort Bragg, NC for training. He was given the opportunity to enlist in the Army Air Force for three years, an option he chose to limit his length of time in the service to three years. He was then assigned to Lockbourne Air Base, Columbus OH as an Aviation Mechanic. He was discharged as a Sergeant and returned home to finish his education at North Carolina A&T pursuing a degree in Business Administration. Unable to find work in his field, Bill moved to Washington, DC to continue his studies and seek employment with the Federal Government. He continued his studies and found employment as an Accountant in the Federal Government. In 1984, he retired as a Systems Accountant after 31 years of service.
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