Athens, Ga. – Two members of the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American military aviators in the American armed forces, will participate in a panel discussion on Feb. 28 at 6:30 p.m. in the University of Georgia Chapel. The discussion is free and open to the public.
Hillard W. Pouncy and R. Val Archer were two of nearly 1,000 pilots trained in Tuskegee, Ala., from 1941 to 1946. They will discuss the triumphs and challenges of serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps despite the segregation of the military and the country’s deep racial divide at that time.
“These men are trailblazers who overcame tremendous odds to serve their nation, paving the way for the desegregation of the American military. We believe their triumphant story will inspire students and will be a fitting conclusion to our Black History Month observance,” said Megan Segoshi, senior coordinator of Multicultural Services and Programs.
Pouncy and Archer will also be honored with the presentation of official Air Force commemorative coins by members of UGA’s Air Force ROTC Detachment 160.
Tuskegee Airmen Inc. is a nonprofit organization dedicated to keeping alive the history, achievements and importance of the original Tuskegee Airmen. The organization exists primarily to motivate and inspire young Americans to become active participants in the nation’s democratic process. Its programs and services support young men and women pursuing excellence, paying special attention to those interested in careers in aviation, technology and aerospace.
More than 50 active chapters are located in major cities and military installations throughout the U.S. The membership consists of civilians, veterans and military personnel from all branches of the service.
The event is sponsored by Multicultural Services and Programs within the Division of Student Affairs, the Office of Institutional Diversity, the Honors Program and the Entertainment Division of the University Union Student Programming Board.
Multicultural Services and Programs is a unit within UGA’s Division of Student Affairs. For more information, call 706/542-5773 or see http://msp.uga.edu.