From the Director: Mildred and Herbert Carter, a love story in the air...
It takes pioneers to force change. Herbert and Mildred would play their part in the years ahead. But in those early days, they didn't see themselves as trailblazers. They were young and in love.
Their rendezvous point: 3,000 feet above a bridge at Lake Martin, 25 miles away from base. He'd be flying a repaired AT6 trainer. She'd be in a much slower Piper J-3 Cub.
The two would become known as the first couple of the Tuskegee Airmen. Herbert earned his wings as a second lieutenant. Mildred Hemmons Carter earned her pilot’s license, becoming the first black woman in Alabama to do so.
Mildred is counted among the history-making Tuskegee Airmen. She learned that the military had created a new initiative to recruit female pilots with a program called the Women’s Air Service Pilots (WASP). As the WASP were restricted due to the military's segregation policy, Mildred was denied admission because she was African American.
Seventy years after she’d earned her license, Mildred was recognized as a member of the WASP. She even received a medal with an inscription reading: “The First Women in History to Fly America.”