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​Running for his third presidential term, Franklin Roosevelt made a 1940 campaign promise to allow the training of black military pilots. In cooperation with the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, the Army in 1941 created a program to induct and train what would eventually amount to more than 14,000 airmen, of whom about 1,000 would become pilots; the others became navigators, bombardiers, radio operators, administrators, weathermen, and other support personnel. Collectively, these “Tuskegee Airmen” built a solid combat record. Click here to check out Air Force Magazine's complement to the photoessay on the Tuskegee Airmen, which appears in our March print issue.