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Roscoe Conkling Brown Sr


Scored two victories, including one Me262 jet.

Tuskegee Airman. Brown was one of 1000 fighter pilots to train as a part of the segregated Army Air Corps unit at Tuskegee, Alabama. Not allowed to practice or fight with their white counterparts, the Tuskegee Airmen distinguished themselves by painting the tails of their airplanes red, which led to them becoming known as the "Red Tails." Their story was told in a 2012 movie of the same name, on which Brown was an adviser.

As commander of the 100th Fighter Squadron of the 332nd Fighter Group, he flew 68 missions during World War II and is credited as the first to shoot down one of Germany’s new state-of-the-art fighter jets while piloting his propeller driven P-51. Brown would eventually be awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his bravery and skill. The Airmen as a group would receive the Congressional Gold Medal in 2007 from President George Bush in belated recognition of their service.

Prior to his wartime service, Brown graduated from Springfield College in Springfield, Mass., where he was valedictorian of the Class on 1943. After the war, Captain Brown resumed his education. His doctoral dissertation was on exercise physiology and he became a professor at New York University and later, President of Bronx Community College. In 1992, Brown received an honorary doctor of humanics degree from his alma mater, Springfield College. For many years, he also hosted "African American Legends," a public affairs show produced by CUNY TV.

He died of complications from a hip fracture. In lieu of a traditional funeral Brown requested a jazz concert instead.


Units served with

  • 332nd Fighter Group
  • 100th Fighter Squadron

    100th Fighter Squadron

    Established in February 1942 at Tuskegee Army Airfield, Alabama to train African-American flight cadets graduated from the Tuskegee Institute Army contract flying school. At Tuskegee, the squadron performed advanced combat flying training. As the...


Associated Place


Event Location Date
Born Washington, DC, USA 9 March 1922
Lived in New York, NY, USA 1943
Graduated Springfield, MA, USA May 1943

Bachelor's Degree
Springfield College

Graduated Pilot Training/Commissioned Tuskegee, AL, USA 12 March 1944

Class 44-C-SE

Died Bronx, NY, USA 2 July 2016


Date Contributor Update
24 November 2020 15:56:32 decwriter Changes to awards

NARA files verified DFC and AM w/8 OLCs. He earned at least one bronze star on the EAME Campaign Medal.

Date Contributor Update
04 December 2016 01:39:54 466thHistorian Created entry with surname, middlename, firstname, suffix, nationality, service number, highest rank, role, biography, events, unit associations, place associations and media associations