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Tuskegee Airman Celebrates 100th Birthday, Gifted Key To Detroit

(CBS DETROIT) - A decorated war hero, science teacher and mentor to many.

Lt. Col. Alexander Jefferson spent decades serving others and now the City of Detroit is sending him a big thank you, with a big celebration.

The Tuskegee Airman celebrated his 100th birthday Monday with high honors, from the city's highest office.

Lt. Col. Jefferson was awarded a key to the city during a rededication ceremony at Jefferson Field in Rouge Park, which is named after the World-War II vet.

The Office of Arts, Culture and Entrepreneurship also unveiled plans to create a plaza and statue in honor of the red tails pilot.

"So it is so fitting that this park where you flew model airplanes as a boy will continue to inspire Detroiters for generations," said Senator Debbie Stabenow.

Lt. Col. Jefferson will forever be etched in the city's history for his noble service to the country and local community.

"You were a boy who grew into a young man who have become a decorated pilot, and again, I say this with all seriousness, who helped save the world," said Rochelle Riley, Detroit ACE Director.

Jefferson Field is located on the corner of Joy Road and Spinoza on the city's west-side.


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