One Of America's First Black Airmen Watches Inauguration

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Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Don Jackson, retired Wichita veterinarian and former B-25 pilot, watched the swearing in of America's 44th president with interest.

Jackson says he never thought he'd live long enough to see the day when an African-American would become president.

"Maybe we've gotten over that thing about a matter of skin.. I don't think that we have. I don't think the world ever will," Jackson said.

He says he never let skin color get in the way of what he wanted to do in life. Jackson was part of what was called the Tuskegee Experiment, when blacks prved they were more than capable of being fighter and bomber pilots.

In 1945, Jackson became a B-25 pilot.

He then went to Kansas State University to become a veterinarian and had a Wichita practice for 44 years.

Jackson thinks President Obama's election had less to do with skin color and more to do with a brilliant mind and organizational skills.

He points out there are many hundreds of African-Americans who are presidents of corporations and who have attained other high ranks of society.

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