What Were the Names of the Tuskegee Airmen?
Between 1941 and 1946, 992 African-American pilots trained at Tuskegee Army Air Field, and this group is collectively known as the Tuskegee Airmen. The full list of pilots can be found in the book "Black Knights - The Story of the Tuskegee Airmen" and also from Tuskegee University.
The Tuskegee Airmen were the first African-American pilots to be trained in the United States and officially formed the 477th Bombardment Group and the 332nd Fighter Group of the U.S. Army Air Forces. Although only the pilots were trained in Tuskegee, Ala., all of the support and service staff of these two groups were also African-Americans, as the Army was still segregated at the time. For this reason, the name Tuskegee Airmen is often applied to all members of these groups, including bombardiers, navigators, ground support and even cooks, nurses and other service personnel.
Of the two groups, only the 332nd Fighter Group was ever deployed overseas. This group served in Italy during World War II beginning in 1944 and was the first African-American air group to serve in combat duty. The year before, the 99th Pursuit Squadron became the first African-American squadron to fly in combat when they began flying missions in northern Africa. The squadron also flew missions in Italy and Sicily as part of the 332nd Fighter Group.