DULUTH, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota’s last surviving Tuskegee Airman, Joseph Philip Gomer, has died. He was 93.
His daughter, Phyllis Douglass, of Claremont, Calif., tells The Associated Press he died of cancer Thursday at a Duluth nursing home.
During World War II, Gomer was a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, America’s first black fighter pilots. He flew 68 combat missions in P-47s and P-51s, and survived a crash landing and having his plane shot up by a German fighter. The success of the Tuskegee Airmen is credited with helping prompt the integration of the military.
The Duluth News Tribune reports (http://bit.ly/1cEXCH4 ) a bronze statue of a young Gomer in his flight suit stands at the Duluth airport terminal. Another statue of Gomer was unveiled earlier this year in his hometown of Iowa Falls, Iowa.