• Lake Charles Chapter President killed in a plane crash

    Tuskegee, AL, August 16, 2019  –  Franklin J.P. Augustus, 69, died 3:20 p.m. Friday August 16, 2019 in a plane crash about a half-mile south of New Orleans Lakefront [Lake Pontchartrain’s] Airport.  The plane involved was a 1983 Pitts S-2B aircraft. The Federal Aviation Administration will be investigating the crash and National Transportation Safety Board officials said there was a fire reported after the crash. The accident also took the life of his passenger, Nancy Parker, 53, WVUE-TV New Orleans news anchor while filming a news story. 

    Augustus was a passionate pilot, a certified flight instructor, and a person dedicated to TAI and other causes. Augustus was president of the Lake Charles Chapter of the Tuskegee Airmen Inc.  “He was one of the most passionate people I know,” according to Maggie Thomas, TAI administrative director. “He was remarkable, and full of energy.”  Augustus was instrumental in reinvigorating the Lake Charles Chapter in 2017 by recruiting members from New Orleans and across Louisiana.  He also established a Lake Charles Chapter TAI Youth Aviation Program in conjunction with support from the City of New Orleans along with introducing flying to community youth through the Young Eagles program and the Civil Air Patrol.

    Augustus grew up in a poor neighborhood in New Orleans and has been flying since he was 19.  He got hooked on aerobatics after taking advanced flight instruction in 1978.  He later developed a love for the air show business and became a collector of Pitts Special aerobatic planes. 

    In a 1988 New Orleans Times-Picayune story, Augustus described himself as the only black civilian air show pilot in the country.  A 1988 Ebony article contained a photograph of Augustus with his Pitts S-2B, the plane he flew and performed “daredevil aerial maneuvers at some 500 air shows annually.” He said “I was falling all over the sky because I wasn’t used to it,” he said, of the spins, rolls and loops.  “It’s fun,” he added. “[but] when I found out that aerobatic planes can take everything we give them and not fall apart, I wanted to do it every chance I got.”

    He often visited schools to speak with young students to sell young black students on aspiring to become pilots. “I want to let the young people know that if I can make it, anybody can,” he said in an article 31 years ago. Thirty years ago, Augustus described himself as the “world’s only black civilian air-show acrobatic pilot.” He said “It’s difficult to be a black in aviation because there are so few of us now. “There’s not a real color barrier, but when you walk in the door and you’re the only black person in the room, it’s difficult.”

    His Lake Charles Chapter also partnered with The Drug Fighter, an organization that seeks to prevent substance abuse, youth violence, gang affiliation, and crime among youth. As part of the program, members would dress up as superheroes to try and persuade kids not to do drugs. The organization aimed to help inner city children get exposure to flying, develop math skills and computer skills that would later help them in aviation. In his inspirational talks to youth, Augustus would mention that he grew up across from a public housing complex and that one of his challenges was to overcome overtures from people who would have set him on a path to crime.  “Indeed, we teach children to fly, in practical and symbolic terms. They will now get “high” by soaring to the heights,” The Drug Fighter website says.

    Franklin J.P. Augustus will be greatly missed by the National Office of Tuskegee Airmen Inc., the Lake Charles Chapter, and the City of New Orleans for his lasting contributions to our organization and his community.

  • B.O. Davis Airfield Dedication at USAFA

    For Immediate Release

    The United States Air Force Academy, Colorado Springs, CO – An invitation for November 1st, 2019. Tuskegee Airmen Inc. DOTA’s, TAI leadership and active chapter members are cordially invited to The United States Air Force Academy airfield dedication ceremony to formally name it in honor of General Benjamin O. Davis Jr. The ceremony will take place in the morning, and an additional recognition of the Davis family will be made at The United States Air Force Academy football game the following day, November 2nd.

    For more details, please contact Maj Mike Plummer, 719-333-6326 or Michael.Plummer1@usafa.edu.

  • TAI and Miles Analysts Partners Announce Service Agreement

    Miles Analysts Partners to lead donor & sponsor partnerships, development & licensing services

    June 24, 2019 Tuskegee, Alabama – Tuskegee Airmen Inc. (TAI) and Miles Analysts Partners (MAP) announced the signing of a service agreement to support TAI’s to expand the reach and long-term viability and sustainability of the organization and its mission. TAI is dedicated to the preservation of the legacy and accomplishments of the first African American aviators during World War II. Secondly to introduce and involve young people across the nation in the world of science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

    “We are very excited about Miles Analysts Partners as part of TAI team, their experience in capital raising, business analysis, product development and licensing fulfill core needs for TAI’s future” says Retired Brigadier General, Leon Johnson, National President of Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated.

    Miles Analyst Partners will focus on business analysis and strategic initiatives that build memberships, partnerships, licensing and merchandising. Miles Analysts Partners is led by Jacob R. Miles III, a nationally recognized entrepreneur and business leader in the toy and entertainment industry with experience in capital raising, product development and licensing.

    “I am honored to be part of the TAI team, supporting the mission of Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated. I am humbled by their history and stand proud of their accomplishments says Jacob R. Miles III, Managing Partner of Miles Analysts Partners

    TAI and Miles Analyst Partners will work together to honor and preserve the legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen by establishing a unique brand identity for TAI that supports the highest quality standards and the future of Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated (TAI).

    About Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated – TAI is a 501(c)3, non-profit, national organization existing primarily to motivate and inspire young Americans to become participants in our nation’s society and its democratic process. It also supports young men and women pursuing excellence, paying special attention to those interested in careers in aviation, technology, aerospace and the sciences.  TAI is dedicated to keeping alive the history, achievements, and importance of the original Tuskegee Airmen.

    About Miles Analysts Partners – founded by media, entertainment & toy industry analyst, investor, award winning engineer, entrepreneur and former Fortune 500, Corporate Officer. Jacob R. Miles III, he leads a team with extensive leadership and management experience in fundraising, marketing, events, technology, media, entertainment, licensing, toys and games, experienced business analysts and consultants representing over 75 years of bottom line responsibility experience.

  • 2019 Tuskegee Airmen, Inc (TAI) 48TH Annual National Convention Military Awards

    2019 Tuskegee Airmen, Inc (TAI) Annual National Military Awards recipients:

    GENERAL BENJAMIN O. DAVIS, JR. MILITARY AWARD (FGO CATEGORY)

    Major Richelle N.J. Hill (USAF)

    Chief, Services’ Policy Integration Branch

    Headquarters U. S. Air Force, Directorate of Services (AF/A1S)

    Pentagon, Washington District of Colombia

    CAPTAIN ROBERT W. WILLIAMS MILITARY AWARD (CGO CATEGORY)

    Captain Tamiko T. Gheen (USAF)

    Flight Commander, TRICARE Operations & Patient Administration

    375th Medical Support Squadron

    Scott AFB, Illinois 62225

    CHIEF MASTER SERGEANT FRED ARCHER MILITARY AWARD (SNCO CATEGORY)

    Senior Master Sergeant Eric A. Simon

    Program Manager, Maintenance Manpower

    Directorate of Logistics, Force Protection, and Engineering (ACC/A4)

    Headquarters, Air Combat Command

    Joint Base Langley-Eustis, Virginia

    SENIOR MASTER SERGEANT MARGARET FRANCES BARBOUR MILITARY AWARD (AMN-NCO CATEGORY)

    Technical Sergeant Terrance D. Cooley (USAF)

    NCOIC, Commander’s Support Staff

    837th Cyberspace Operations Squadron

    Joint Base San Antonio – Lackland, Texas

    The military awards will be presented during the Military/Diversity luncheon at the Rosen Centre Hotel, Orlando, Florida, on Thursday, August 8, 2019. Find specific information about the convention at https://www.taiconvention.com/ .

    POC for this event is Mr. Trent Dudley. If you have any questions not answered on the website, you may contact him at dudleytod1@gmail.com . Thank you for your continued support of this event commemorating a vital piece of our nation’s history.

  • 2019 Continuing the Legacy in Aviation

    Southwest Airlines invites rising sixth grade through undergraduate college students (accompanied by a parent or guardian) residing in the Continental U.S. to attend a hands-on aviation experience. Airfare and hotel accommodations are provided. Applications are due by Friday, August 16, 2019 at 11:59 pm CST. Finalists will be notified by Monday, September 2, 2019.
    The Continuing the Legacy in Aviation includes touring the Southwest Airlines’ Pilot and Flight Attendant Training Centers, Maintenance facility, Network Operations Control, Headquarters Emergency Command Center, and Listening Center; flying the Southwest Airlines’ flight simulators; visiting the Frontiers of Flight Museum; meeting Southwest Airlines’ Leaders; participating in the Technology Escape Room; learning the history of the Documented Original Tuskegee Airmen; and mentoring by retired and current Southwest Airlines Employees.

  • 2019 TAI National President Armed Forces Week and Memorial Day Letter

  • 2019 Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated National Military Awards

    All submissions must be received by 1700 CST 7 June 2019

    1. The purpose of this solicitation message is to request nominations for the 2019 Tuskegee Airmen Incorporated National Military Awards.

    2. Award recipients will be recognized August 8 – 10, 2019 at the 48th Annual Tuskegee Airmen National Convention at the Rosen Centre Hotel, Orlando, Florida.

    3. Eligibility: active component, reserve or guard members serving in any Branch of the US armed services. Awards will be presented to outstanding military members regardless of race, color, religion, national origin or gender.

    4. Nominations will be accepted by wings or wing equivalents (brigade level for US Army and US Marine Corps, or wing/strike group for Navy). Pentagon three letter offices will be considered wing equivalents (AF/A3O, SAF/AQA, etc.).

    The full message on Nomination Packages can be found at:2019TAI_MilitaryAwardsSolicitationMessage