Daily Dad News
Son Of Tuskegee Airman Continues To Be Inspired By His Father
February 15, 2012
The tale of the Tuskegee Airmen was retold in film by way of the recent Red Tails movie from George Lucas, a fictionalized tale based on the Airmen who were the first African-American aviators of the United States armed forces. While some of the surviving members of the group are honored annually at the Tuskegee Airmen Convention, one man who was a son of an Airman finds continued inspiration from his father.
Rich Walker carries the memories of his father Arthur Walker Jr.’s air pilot dreams close to his heart, citing that his success as a basketball coach was due to his father’s strong influence. “He was a great model for me to emulate,” Walker said to the Press-Citizen in Iowa. “And the lessons, the perseverance lessons I remember more than anything — never giving up on your dreams.”
Rich Walker made some dents in history himself, becoming Florida International’s first basketball coach in the 1980s before moving on to his assistant coach duties at the University of Iowa alongside coach Tom Davis. Walker, now 62, recalled early memories of his father and how he dreamed that one day he’d be a pilot in their native Detroit.
“My dad was very patriotic,” said Rich Walker. “They had to fight to be able to fight for our country. And then when they came back, they had to fight for their civil rights. So the amount of adversity he overcame was just remarkable. He just had a carefree, ‘I can do it’ way about him. And he instilled it in me.”
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