Traveling Tribute to African Americans in Aviation Runs until March 5

MELBOURNE, FLA.—Commemorating Black History Month, the Florida Institute of Technology College of Aeronautics is hosting a traveling exhibit, “A Pilot Lights the Way,” in the first-floor lobby of the Skurla Aeronautics Building. The exhibit is a tribute to Jesse Leroy Brown, the first African American U.S. Navy aviator, and to African Americans in aviation.

The display includes a collection of art, photographs, artifacts and written accounts of the life of Brown, who was shot down at the age of 24. The curator is Valada Parker Flewellyn, an author, poet and storyteller from Sanford, Fla.

Also part of the exhibit is a 1942 Link Trainer, a landmark in mechanical engineering. Designed by Edwin A. Link, the device provided a pilot with a realistic replication of actual flying. From its inception in 1930 through today’s advanced versions, the Link Trainer has helped develop the flying skills of hundreds of thousands of pilots and significantly improved flight safety.

The lobby display will remain until Friday, March 5. The community is invited to come by and see it. The Skurla Aeronautics Building is located at the corner of University Boulevard and Country Club Road. For more information, contact Ryan Tenny at (321) 674-7369.

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