Hearne TX eventWe’ve spent a whirlwind fall traipsing around Texas. Dallas – Midland – Hearne – Dallas – Houston – WOW! We’re moppin’ our brow and resting our boots because it was an exciting month-long tour around the state. Even Pecos Bill would have been proud. The RISE ABOVE Traveling Exhibit featuring our original movie Rise Above and our P-51C Mustang Tuskegee Airmen welcomed countless kids and adults who learned about the history and legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen!

Our parent organization, the Commemorative Air Force (CAF), held the first-ever World War II Air Expo in Dallas. We were lucky enough to have two original Tuskegee Airmen join us at the event – Lt. Calvin Spann and Staff Sgt. Homer Hogues. It is such an honor to have these living legends on site to speak first hand of their experiences.

Dallas aviation expoAt the DFW Aviation Expo, held at DFW International Airport, over 5,000 students attended the event. That means thousands of children had the chance to see our P-51C Mustang up close and personal…THOUSANDS!

During the Round up for Kids event in Hearn, again over a thousand students got to see the Rise Above movie and leave with their CAF Red Tail Squadron dog tag, that will forever remind them of the Airmen’s six guiding principals – Aim High, Believe In Yourself, Use Your Brain, Be Ready To Go, Never Quit and Expect to Win!

The tour was full of many great moments, but there was one that stood out for those who were lucky enough to see it. At the Wings Over Houston air show, over 1,500 students were handed their inspirational dog tag directly by original Tuskegee Airmen Col. Charles McGee and Lt. Col. George Hardy, right after they viewed the Rise Above movie. Col. McGee was the Tuskegee Airman featured in the film. Talk about celebrity sighting!

Col McGhee IN at WOHoustonThen, as Col. McGee was being interviewed on the air show announcer’s stand AND receiving a standing ovation, our P-51C Mustang Tuskegee Airmen taxied by the stand at that precise moment. I’m sure there weren’t too many dry eyes. Not only could we inspire and educate this huge audience about the history of the Tuskegee Airmen, but it was a fitting tribute to an honorable man and American hero.

Thank you to our donors and sponsors who help keep the RISE ABOVE Traveling Exhibit on the road and the P-51C Mustang Tuskegee Airmen in the skies. These events, and the many others we participated in while on our Texas tour, were made possible by our generous supporters – and gave us the opportunity to continue to pursue our mission to educate audiences across the country about the history and legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen so their strength of character, courage and ability to triumph over adversity may serve as a means to inspire others to RISE ABOVE obstacles in their own lives and achieve their goals.

Do you want to help out? Consider our online store for some of your holiday shopping needs! All purchases go to fund our educational outreach initiatives, including traveling to events just like these. Find informative and inspirational books (including the autobiography of Col. McGee!), clothing, hats, calendars and much more at redtail.org/store/. The holidays are coming up fast! Get online today and knock out a few gifts, and support our worthy organization along the way!

The CAF Red Tail Squadron is a volunteer-driven organization dedicated to educating audiences across the country about the history and legacy of the Tuskegee Airmen, America’s first black military pilots and their support personnel. Learn more at www.redtail.org.

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