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Sat, Aug 06, 2005

Cirrus Signs On As Redtail Project Sponsor

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 president.

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 group.

"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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