2012-02-09


Kane McKeesport Physician Flew With “Red Tails”

Dr. Harry Lanauze Honored For War Service with Tuskegee Airmen


Photo of Dr. Lanauze Photo of Dr. Lanauze

Kane McKeesport’s own Dr. Harry Lanauze was recently honored at the H.J. Heinz History Center for his war service.  Dr. Lanauze is a former fighter pilot with the renowned Tuskegee Airman of World War II.

“Tuskegee Airmen” is the popular name of a group of African American pilots who fought in World War II.  Before the Tuskegee Airmen no African American had become a U.S. military pilot.  The American military was racially segregated and they were subject to racial discrimination, within and outside the military.

Awareness of the Tuskegee Airmen has risen recently due to President George W. Bush presenting them the Congressional Gold Medal in 2007.  Because Western Pennsylvania has a large number of former Tuskegee Airmen WQED aired a production called “Fly Boys:  Western Pennsylvania’s Tuskegee Airmen” in 2008.

“Red Tails”, a George Lucas film, recently opened in theatres nationwide.  The movie depicts the story of a squadron of African American pilots who overcame racial intolerance to establish themselves in the skies over Germany and on the ground at home.  Dr. Lanauze was a Red Tail pilot and a consultant for the project.  At the latest Kane McKeesport physician’s meeting Dr. Lanauze spoke about the movie and his service in the military.  He verified the authenticity of the movie but told the group that much of the story happened before they were sent overseas to fight.  He told his colleagues about the intense training and the narrow-mindedness that needed to be conquered before they were even allowed to join the battle.

As the years pass by there are less people around with personal experience in World War II.  An enormous debt of gratitude is owed to the brave men and women who fought in this war.  Kane Regional Centers and our whole nation salute Dr. Lanauze for his service in the Air Force and dedication to his patients.

For more information, contact Bill LaLonde, Community Outreach Representative at Kane Regional Centers at 412.422.6773.


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