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NEWS | Feb. 14, 2023

Black History Month: Maj. Marcus Davis, 99th Flying Training Squadron

By Benjamin Faske 12th Flying Training Wing Public Affairs

Maj. Marcus Davis, 99th Flying Training Squadron instructor pilot at Joint Base San Antonio-Randolph, explains why Black History Month is important to him and how he became an Air Force pilot.
Where did you grow up and what influenced you to join the Air Force?
I grew up in the Magee, Mississippi. I played sports growing up, so I was used to doing team activities. I Always had an interest in flying but never had the resources or knew how to pursue it. Considering I was so used to being on a team. I wanted to continue to do it, so I looked into flying for the Air Force and the rest is history.
What aircraft do you fly and what is your job at the 99th FTS? Duty Title?
"My previous platform was KC-135, and now T-1s at JBSA-Randolph. However, currently I'm currently on deployment flying E-11A BACN aircraft. At JBSA-Randolph I'm the T-1 ADO for the 12th Training Squadron"
February is Black History Month, what does it mean to you?
Although I always find time to do this throughout the year, it reminds to me slow down in life and pay homage to my heritage and those who sacrificed so much for me to be in the position that I am today. This month reminds us to not forget the achievements of the leaders of my culture ... not just the ones that normally get highlighted, but also the local leaders of today who do great work throughout the nation.
Working at the 99th and having the Tuskegee Airmen history all around you, how does that make you feel when you go to work every day?
I cannot describe how proud I am to carry on the legacy of Tuskegee Airmen It was a great honor to be able to take retired Brig. Gen. Charles McGee to the simulator, show him the 99th squadron exhibits just before his passing. I always enjoy being able to reference the Tuskegee Airmen when describing where I work.
What does it mean to you to be an African American pilot in the Air Force?
I've always recognized the shortage of representation of minorities in both military and civilian aviation so I try to mentor, represent and reach out to under represented minorities as much as possible regarding careers in aviation and also careers that also feel difficult to achieve outside of sports.
Do you have any mentors who have helped you along the way?
Retired Lt. Col. Charles "Spanky" Gilliam, Col. Mike McMilan, retired Master Sgt. Joe Milton Logan, Willie George Davis (late brother), Slovakia Griffith.
What is your favorite quote or saying?
"Don't ever be afraid to fail" and "Friendship is essential to the soul."