Gold Medal for Tuskegee Airmen

Tuskegee Airmen of World War II fame received a collective Congressional Gold Medal “in recognition of their unique military record, which inspired revolutionary reform in the Armed Forces,” according the public law authorizing the award. The legendary Airmen became the first black U.S. military pilots, training at a separate facility near Tuskegee, Ala., hence the name. Of the 992 graduates, some 450 served in combat during World War II, establishing an exemplary standard in fighters and bombers.