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Tuskegee Heritage Living History group presents at Cottage Elementary

Student talking with presenter Last month, in a timely celebration in advance of Memorial Day, fourth and fifth-grade students at Cottage Elementary School were treated with a special discussion about the Tuskegee Airmen of World War II. The Tuskegee Heritage Chapter of Sacramento provided this incredible opportunity to students through memorabilia, videos and private stories.

As the direct descendants of Documented Original Tuskegee Airmen (DOTA), the presenters spoke personally about their fathers’ stories and the importance of remembering the history of the very first African-American aviators in the United States Air Force.

Lanelle and Leigh, daughters of Tuskegee Airman George “Spanky” Roberts, captivated the students with fond memories of their father and family during his time in school and through his life as an airman. While Leigh Roberts works mostly behind the scenes, she couldn’t hide her excitement towards her experience with the students.

“It’s really nice when you get to speak with kids because they have a completely different perspective on it,” Roberts said. She chuckled, then added, “And I like their questions.”

Students and staff at Cottage were equally enthusiastic for the opportunity. Principal Karen Mix was eager to expose the kids to a history presentation that is not always in the textbooks. She was amazed with the interest and enthusiasm her students were showing in this extraordinary experience.

Taryn Wieler, fourth-grade student at Cottage Elementary, was impressed with the presentation and enjoyed learning about the airmen.

“I’m really happy that everybody at our school can learn about these people who fought in World War II, and I’m just really happy that they were able to come here and teach everybody,” said Wieler.


The Sacramento Observer also featured the visit to Cottage Elementary in a recent issue.