One of the last surviving members of the Tuskegee Airmen has passed away at the age of 95.
Floyd Carter Sr. resided in the Bronx and served as an NYPD detective for 27 years. Carter joined the NYPD in 1953 and retired in 1980.
The 47 Precinct in the Bronx is mourning the loss of a great man who left a long legacy.
His NYPD duties included work as a bodyguard for visiting heads of state, and Carter spent time with Cuban leader Fidel Castro and Soviet head Nikita Khrushchev, his son, Floyd Jr., said.
Carter, a decorated veteran, served in the U.S. Military and served in three wars: World War II, the Korean War and the Vietnam War.
During the Korean and Vietnam wars, Carter headed the first troop of supply-laden planes into Berlin during the well-known Cold War flight of 1948-49.
There were only 16,000 black pilots, technicians and support staff who served during World War II as Tuskegee Airmen, and Carter was one of them. Tuskegee Airmen were the first black aviators in the U.S. armed forces.
Carter rose to the rank of Air Force lieutenant colonel. President Bush presented Carter with the Congressional Gold Medal in 2007 for breaking the color barrier in Tuskegee.
“We mourn the loss of a true American hero. Our community and nation has lost a giant,” read a tweet from the 47th Precinct, according to The New York Daily News.
Carter worked with “Star Wars” filmmaker George Lucas on his 2012 film, “Red Tails.” The film depicts the Tuskegee Airmen, the first black aviators in the U.S. military, trained in Alabama as a segregated unit.
“He’s got a little history. We were blessed, we sure were. He went from what I call the outhouse to the fine house. The Lord blessed him,” Floyd Jr. said.
Carter is survived by his wife, two children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.
He was married to for more than 70 years to his wife, Atherine, an Alabama native. They were married at the air base in 1945.