WATCH: Flyover through Atlanta honors Tuskegee Airmen at Juneteenth parade
ATLANTA, Ga. (Atlanta News First) - The Commemorative Air Force’s Airbase in Georgia honored the Tuskegee Airmen with a flyover at the 2023 Juneteenth Atlanta Parade.
The Tuskegee Airmen, so called because they were trained at the Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee, Alabama, were a group of Black fighters in World War II’s European and African theaters. They flew various aircraft, but are most associated with the P-51 Mustang. Some of the pilots painted the tails of their planes, leading to the famous nickname “Red Tails.”
The parade flyover used the “missing man” formation. The formation is often used to honor fallen pilots. Four pilots begin the flyover, but one of the pilots pulls away the squadron reaches the target, representing the “missing man.”
The flyover was led by 95-year-old Tuskegee Airman veteran mechanic Rev. Thomas N. Bristow, Sr. Bristow first joined the Airmen in 1946, becoming an aircraft sheet metal specialist and non-commissioned officer.
Bristow climbed into the cockpit of Airbase Georgia’s P-51 Mustang and led the flyover.
“Airbase Georgia Leader Joel Perkins said, “CAF Airbase Georgia is honored to participate in the recognition of all Black military veterans, especially the Tuskegee Airmen and all who played critical roles in winning World War II to preserve our democracy” in a statement.
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