If you search West Virginia military heritage on the internet, a long list of heroic names come up. Individuals such as Chuck Yeager, Woody Williams, and Jessica Lynch usually are the first to pop up, but one name you really have to dig to find is someone who broke barriers and paved a way for African-American Airmen.
Retired Col. George “Spanky” Roberts was born September 24, 1918 in the small rural town of London, WV. At an early age he and his family moved to Fairmont, WV where he graduated from Dunbar High at the age of 15, then returning South to attend West Virginia State College (WVSC). At only 18 years old, Spanky graduated with his Bachelor’s in Mechanical Arts.