Feb 28, 2023
Buckle up to time travel to World War II and the post-war era as Hoosier History Live explores Indiana connections to the acclaimed Tuskegee Airmen. There even are Indiana/Tuskegee links; such as MOAA, to the aerial competition that eventually became known as "Top Gun", the inspiration for blockbuster movies.
This show follows up a program in 2017 that delved into the lives of several Hoosiers who were fighter pilots in the trailblazing squadron, which drew its name from the Tuskegee Army Air Field in Alabama. This time, as Hoosier History Live salutes Black History Month, we will spotlight an aviator and educator from Angola, Ind., who became the director for the first two phases of flight training for the Tuskegee Airmen. Not only that, four of the Tuskegee pilots trained by Dr. Lewis Jackson (1912-1994) went to win the championship trophy in the first U.S. Air Force competition that came to be called "Top Gun". Those pilots in that initial competition (officially called the Air Force Fighter Gunnery Meet) were flying an aircraft made in Evansville, a Republic P-47 Thunderbolt.
Our guide for all of this and other Tuskegee/Indiana connections will be Reginald DuValle, an Indianapolis native who graduated in 1979 from the U.S. Air Force Academy. Known as "Reg", he is the past president of the Indianapolis chapter of Tuskegee Airmen Inc, a nonprofit that honors members of the all-black Army air squadron who served during an era when the military was segregated.