American History, Family History – Red Tails: WWII to the Present

By Jim Allen, Editor, NuVoteReach

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Great Uncle Captain (later Major) Andrew D. “Jug” Turner (January 6, 1920-September 14, 1947) commander of the 100th Fighter Squadron, 332nd Fighter Group, 15th Air Force.

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Pilots of the 332nd Fighter Group, Tuskegee Airmen, the elite, all-African American unit, pose at Ramitelli, Italy: (from left) Lt. Dempsey Morgan, Lt. Carroll Woods, Lt. Robert Nelson Jr., Capt. Andrew D. Turner and Lt. Clarence Lester.

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Red Tails Commander Capt. Andrew D. Turner, Tuskegee Airmen, from the cockpit of his North American P-51C-10-NT Mustang [#42-103960] “Skipper’s Darlin’ III.”)

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Capt Turner’s Grandniece, my wife, Antoinette Kim (Myers) Allen

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Correction: This is”Red Tails”  Capt. Paulus C. Taylor 301st FS 332nd

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Capt. Turner’s Great Grandnephew Staff Sergeant Donnell Myers (USMC) and wife, Chasity Banks Myers

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Capt Turner’s Great Grandniece (my youngest daughter) Candace Jewell Allen

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Capt Turner’s Great Grandnephew (my son) James O. Allen III

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First Baptist Church Deanwood NE Washington, DC, Rev. Clarence W. Turner III (Capt Turner’s nephew), Antoinette Kim (Myers) Allen (Capt Turner’s grandniece) and me, November 3, 2001

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“Red Tails” Commander Capt. Andrew D. Turner and colleague, Tuskegee Airmen

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“Red Tails” Commander Capt. Andrew D. Turner, Tuskegee Airman

Just this past week, I was watching the movie Red Tails, about the WWII Tuskegee Airmen, which connects to our family history through my wife’s Great Uncle Capt. (later Major) Andrew D. Turner—Commander of the 100th Fighter Squadron, the Tuskegee Airmen.

Here’s the bloodline: My wife: Antoinette Kim (Myers) Allen, is the daughter of Matthew Myers and Jewell Clarice (Turner) Myers (RIP).

My wife’s mother, Jewell, was the daughter of Clarence W. Turner II (RIP) and Martha (Slaughter) Turner (RIP). Capt Andrew D. Turner was Clarence’s W. Turner II’s brother.

Her Great Uncle Andrew, Grandpa Clarence II and seven other siblings were the children of Rev. Clarence W. Turner I and Jennie Virginia (Jones) Turner.

My daughter, Candace Jewell Allen has Andrews’ nose and my wife and youngest son James Oliver Allen III (and many of the Turners and Myers) have his eyes. You can see the family resemblance in our nephew, below — Staff Sergeant Donnell Myers (USMC), deployed overseas at the time of writing. Stay Frosty, D! We love you!

Here’s a brief summary of Great Uncle Andrew’s story from the National Archive:

“Captain (later Major) Andrew D. “Jug” Turner (January 6, 1920-September 14, 1947) commander of the 100th Fighter Squadron, 332nd Fighter Group, 15th Air Force. Turner graduated from Tuskegee class 42-I-SE and was inducted on October 9, 1942. When the 100th’s commanding officer, Lieutenant Robert B. Tresville, failed to return from a mission in June 1944, Turner took command.”

“On July 18, 1944, Turner was credited with a probable Me-109 which he was seen to damage heavily, but a crash was not witnessed. [The Messerschmitt Bf 109, often called Me 109, was a German World War II vintage Fighter plane, with a liquid cooled engines, vulnerable to hits to the cooling system]. Turner flew 69 missions with the 100th,” continued the archive.

“Electing to stay in the Air Force, Turner was killed at Lockbourne Air Force Base, Ohio, when his Republic P-47N Thunderbolt collided with another pilot. Both Turner and the other pilot were killed. Corporal Hugh Beguesse (1917-? ) his plane’s armament crew, was a Caribbean native who moved to Chicago, Illinois; he was not yet a citizen when he was drafted. “Skipper’s Darlin’ III” was sold for scrap on September 30, 1945,” the archive record continued.

Great uncle Andrew was a resident of the Deanwood area of Northeast Washington, DC, and attended Deanwood Elementary and DunbarHigh Schools in Washington, DC. He was a member of the First Baptist Church of Deanwood, of which, his father, Rev. Clarence Turner I was a founding member.

In addition, Clarence I’s grandson (Capt Andrew’s nephew, our uncle “Butch”), Rev. Clarence W. Turner III, who was our pastor, married my wife and me, baptized our children, and licensed my wife and me in ministry, died suddenly on October 13, 2012 (RIP).

You can imagine when we and other family members watch the movie Red Tails. It’s really special!

My wife and our babies’ great uncle was the Commander of the 100th Fighter Squadron, a Red Tail!

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About Jim Allen, Founder/Editor, NuVote Reach

Currently serving as Chief Operating Officer of Alejo Media, emerging as one of Washington, D.C.’s most artistic and innovative video production and post-production media companies. Previously, as Director of News and Media Services at the American Institute of Physics, he led the creation of the InsideScience.org news platform, which includes Inside Science TV. He also previously served as Media Director, Energy NOW! and Clean Skies TV and as Special Reports Editor/Media Relations Director at The Hill newspaper. Jim has served in various executive, business development and/or programming roles for a number of media concerns including CBS Radio/Television, Radio One Inc. and the Los Angeles Times. Since 1995, he has been a contributor to the Reporters Notebook news roundtable program on NBC 4 TV, DC. He earned a music scholarship to Delaware State University, a Bachelor of Arts in English/Television Production at Virginia State University and, from 2003-2007, attended Concord University School of Law. His commendations include the Washington, DC Teachers' Union Media Relations Award and shared an American Academy of Nursing National Media Award. Jim also chairs a development task force for the faith-based, non-profit House of Help/City of Hope, founded and led by Bishop Dr. Shirley Holloway, which has provided substance abuse, mental health and continuing education programs and transitional housing for tens of thousands of homeless (and battered) women, families and men (including ex-offenders) at its shelter and treatment facilities in Washington, DC and Prince George’s and Charles Counties, MD.
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20 Responses to American History, Family History – Red Tails: WWII to the Present

  1. shellakers says:

    That’s AMAZING! I love history but you’re PART of history. SO cool. Makes me want to watch that movie again!

  2. Thank you for following my blog. The Tuskegee Airmen were an extraordinary group of men. I can appreciate “Red Tails” must have filled your family with pride. I saw it too. Sadly, it completely erased and disconnected Black women from the lives of these men, yet it devoted time to a Black pilot and white woman’s relationship. Mildred Carter, Alabama’s first Black female pilot, was the wife of Herbert Carter, a Tuskegee Airman, and the two would rendezvous at 3,000 feet.

  3. Shayn Roby says:

    It was a pleasure to view this. It makes me proud as an American to view the contributions of all of these brave men to guaranteeing freedom for our nation.

  4. Shayn Roby says:

    Beautiful ladies and cute kids too!!

  5. maggiemurphy says:

    Great story, Jim! I see you are another “guardian of family history.” I hope you keep sharing these stories.

  6. cricketmuse says:

    Fascinating! I’m starting to investigate my own heritage–your post certainly inspires me!

  7. I remember watching -and recording- a PBS account of the Tuskegee Airman. I wish more people would see that story; I felt the movie was more of a diservice to those noble men.

  8. Pingback: American History, Family History – Red Tails: WWII to the Present – The Founding Fathers Would Start Over

  9. Lloyd says:

    Jim,
    I am honored you visited my space. The Red Tails story has awaken us to the bravery of those gallant men who blazes the trails upon which we have traveled. I am honored to be a member of the Sacramento Chapter. I look forward to your contributions and leadership to right the ship to which history has made us a passenger.

  10. Craig Huntly says:

    My uncle Clarence E. Huntley Jr. 89 was the Asst. crew chief and later chief chief of “Jug” Turners ship Skippers Darlin. He has lost of good memories and stories about his skipper and I have lots of unpublished photos of Capt. Turner.

  11. Craig Huntly says:

    BTW, The guy with the pipe is not Andrew D. Turner, it is Capt. Paulus C. Taylor 301st FS 332nd FG.

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