Sat, Aug 06, 2005
Carry It Forward
Like most of us whose lives are so
closely associated with the art and science of aviation, Cirrus
Design says its philosophy is that the joy of flying should be
within reach of everybody. To further that mission, Cirrus has
signed on as a sponsor of the Red Tail Project.
"The Red Tail Project is about keeping alive the spirit of the
Tuskegee Airmen, and retaining this important part of aviation
history for future generations to learn about and be inspired by,"
said Dale Klapmeier, Cirrus co-founder and executive vice
The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African Americans to be
trained as WWII military pilots. Over 1,000 Black pilots were
trained in Tuskegee, Alabama with 445 of them entering combat. To
distinguish themselves, they painted the tails of their aircraft
red, thus becoming widely known as the "Red Tails."
Flying more than 15,000 sorties and destroying almost 500 enemy
aircraft, the Tuskegee Airmen and their 'Red Tails' soon became the
'requested' fighter escorts by white bomber pilots. Demonstrating
extraordinary skill and courage, the Red Tails never lost a single
bomber to enemy fighters – a record unmatched by any fighter
"This new partnership opportunity between Cirrus and the Red
Tail Project is a great step forward to continue our educational
goals, and to raise funds to restore one of only two remaining rare
and spectacular P51-C airplanes in the world," said Stan Ross, Red
Tail Project spokesperson.
"The Tuskegee Airmen's legacy of overcoming adversity and
proudly showing that the skies are truly meant for everybody is a
sentiment that we at CIRRUS believe in and we're very excited to be
a part of the Red Tail restoration project," said Klapmeier. "This
is an educational platform that will not only inform today's youth
about this important chapter in history, but will also create
excitement and enthusiasm for aviation."
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