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  The Tuskegee Airmen

Part 5

Colonel Cox had the distinction of serving in the Air Force during three wars. "Killer," as he was known, received initial pilot training at Tuskegee Army Air Field in 1943. He served in the European theatre during World War II with the famed 99th Pursuit Squadron and flew over 100 missions upon his return to combat during the Korean Conflict. 

He heeded the lure of combat once again when he volunteered for duty in Vietnam. He was one of two Black fighter pilots in the world who flew combat and was decorated for bravery in all three years.

Upon his retirement from military life, he joined James O. Plinton as an executive at Eastern Airlines in the position of corporate director of affirmative action and urban affairs. He died in 1988. Hannibal Cox is one of the only two Black aviators to have served in three major wars. (1916-1988)

Colonel Hannibal Cox

Captain Willie H. Fuller

Willie H. Fuller was one of the original members of the 99th Pursuit Squadron during the early 1940s. As a pilot instructor at the Tuskegee Air Base, he, James Alfred (Chief) Plinton, Anderson and others, helped mold the pilots known as the Tuskegee Airmen into a fighting unit which performed admirably in the European theatre of World War I I. Fuller himself performed with the 99th Fighter Squadron during the war. He was among the pilots who helped secure the Island of Pantelleria.

The capture of Pantelleria with the use of ground forces was the first time in history that the Air Force had completely subdued a territory, and marked the first time the Tuskegee Airmen fought against the enemy. While in military service he flew some 76 combat missions and was awarded the Air Medal.

He was promoted to Captain Air Force Reserves after fourteen months overseas, a rank he held upon leaving active military duty in 1947. Fuller was born in Tarboro, North Carolina. Following his military service he became active in the South Florida community with the Boy Scouts. An orginial 99th Pursuit Squadron member. Fuller served the Boy Scouts as well (1919- 1995)


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