Harold H. Brown & Marsha Bordner

Harold Brown photo

About Harold H. Brown: Harold Brown grew up in Minneapolis and went through flight training at Tuskegee Institute in the early 1940's. He became part of the group now known as the Tuskegee Airmen. The persistence and courage of these men in flight led to the desegregation of the military—a necessary first step in our country's move to integration in the country's laws and society. Harold came home from World War II and served in the Strategic Air Command before earning his Ph.D. and serving as an administrator at what is now Columbus State Community College in Ohio.

For more on Harold Brown, visit his Facebook page.

Marsha Bordner photo

About Marsha Bordner: Marsha Stanfield Bordner has always felt a passion for language—from getting a Ph.D. in English from Ohio State University, to serving as a faculty member at Clark State Community College in Springfield, Ohio, to becoming a college president at Terra State Community College. Most recently, she has put those skills to work in writing her husband's story as a black man growing up in America, as one of the famed Tuskegee Airmen, and as a college administrator.



Keep Your Airspeed Up cover

KEEP YOUR AIRSPEED UP: THE STORY OF A TUSKEGEE AIRMAN (2017): "Keep Your Airspeed Up: The Story of a Tuskegee Airman" is the memoir of an African American man who, through dedication to his goals and vision, rose through the despair of racial segregation to great heights of accomplishment, not only as a military aviator, but also as an educator and as an American citizen.

Unlike other historical and autobiographical portrayals of Tuskegee airmen, Harold H. Brown's memoir is told from its beginnings: not on the first day of combat, not on the first day of training, but at the very moment Brown realized he was meant to be a pilot. He revisits his childhood in Minneapolis where his fascination with planes pushed him to save up enough of his own money to take flying lessons. Brown also details his first trip to the South, where he was met with a level of segregation he had never before experienced and had never imagined possible.

During the 1930s and 1940s, longstanding policies of racial discrimination were called into question as it became clear that America would likely be drawn into World War II. The military reluctantly allowed for the development of a flight-training program for a limited number of African Americans on a segregated base in Tuskegee, Alabama. The Tuskegee Airmen, as well as other African Americans in the armed forces, had the unique experience of fighting two wars at once: one against Hitler's fascist regime overseas and one against racial segregation at home.

Colonel Brown fought as a combat pilot with the 332nd Fighter Group during World War II, and was captured and imprisoned in Stalag VII A in Moosburg, Germany, where he was liberated by General George S. Patton on April 29, 1945. Upon returning home, Brown noted with acute disappointment that race relations in the United States hadn't changed. It wasn't until 1948 that the military desegregated, which many scholars argue would not have been possible without the exemplary performance of the Tuskegee Airmen.

31st Annual
Buckeye Book Fair
November 3, 2018
9:30 to 4:00
Fisher Auditorium Wooster, Ohio
$2 Admission
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