Earlier this week Patch reported on an amazing return for Bloom Alumni Lawton Wilkerson and Louis Irons. Check out the amazing photos Mary Compton took.
Sunday, March 4, 2012
Tuesday, February 28, 2012
Lawton Wilkerson and Louis Irons came back to 1944 Alma Mater to be remembered for their life as students and as men of Tuskegee.
Flashes from cameras were going off, a line of photographers were trying to get the best angle to shoot these heroes. You'd think you were at a red carpet event. Friday, Bloom High School welcomed back two heroes whose history was recently re-imagined in the new movie Red Tails. Louis Irons and Lawton Wilkerson, both 1944 graduates at Bloom, were given the star treatment by the Bloom Afro-American Club and students alike. " Lunch and awards were given to the alumni and Tuskegee Airmen inside the Dr. James Steckel Library. "We're getting the celebrity treatment", said Dr. Irons as he posed for a photo with Chicago Heights Mayor David Gonzalez. Irons' best buddy, Lawton Wilkerson couldn't have agreed more. "It has been a pleasure to …
Saturday, February 11, 2012
Lawton Wilkerson grew up with fellow Tuskegee man Louis Irons.
Lawton Wilkerson recently told Lincoln School students about his experiences with the Tuskegee Airmen U.S. Army Air Force unit when he served his country in the 1940s. The Chicago Heights native, who attended Lincoln School and was graduated from Bloom High School, was commissioned as a second lieutenant and earned his “wings” as a B-25 aircraft pilot. Wilkerson answered questions about the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American fliers in the U.S. Armed Services, and about being a pilot when he visited the school Feb. 8 as a special guest speaker at a Black History program. The Tuskegee Airmen included pilots, navigators, bombardiers, maintenance and support staff, instructors, and all the personnel who kept the Army Air Force …
Thursday, February 2, 2012
Now an Olympia Fields resident, Louis Melvin Irons didn't speak about his Tuskegee Days until six years ago. His own children didn't know their father was part of Tuskegee History.
Back in the 1930s the four Irons brothers had the east side of Chicago Heights all sewn up. At the Irons Tavern, when there was a murder, Officer Irons would investigate, the Rev. Irons would say the home-going service and the mortician Irons would bury the victim. All was taken care of. The son of that police officer, Louis Melvin Irons, has a story of his own. One he only started telling six years ago. He broke records as an athlete, had his heart broken in Tuskegee, AL and even met a notorious mobster as a child. But it all starts in Chicago Heights, during the World War II era. Irons remembers it as an industrial city, integrated but class-divided. The east side, where he grew up, was blue collar, made up largely of a mix of Italians…
Wednesday, February 1, 2012
Louis Melvin Irons has quite a story, and it starts right here in Chicago Heights.
Check out the second half of Louis Melvin Irons story to find out what he did after his disappointment at Tuskegee.