Interview with Merrill Ross

Files

Photo of Merrill Ross
Interview transcript, Merrill Ross
Click to Enlarge

Dublin Core

Title

Interview with Merrill Ross

Description

The only son of Mr. & Mrs. Richard Ross from Flat Lick and Pineville, Kentucky, Mr. Ross moved to Topeka, Kansas to accept a teaching position in the public schools when he received his call to serve in the summer of 1944. Having already earned a pilot’s license from a civilian pilot training program at Pittsburg State University, Mr. Ross successfully pursued entrance into the Tuskegee Pilot Training program. But just as he was being prepared to be sent overseas the war ended. Due to Mr. Ross’s extended illness, this interview is primarily with Mr. Ross’s wife, Barbara, and son, Brian, who share their knowledge of Mr. Ross’s military experience as a member of the Tuskegee Airmen. They provide details about his pilot training and his encounters with members of local communities while on furlough. They also highlight his attendance of the inauguration of President Obama in 2008 as a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, who were honored guests of the President. After the war Mr. Ross returned to Topeka, Kansas where he experienced the desegregation of public schools as a faculty and administrator of the city’s segregated schools. Later Mr. Ross became the first African American to serve as principal of a predominantly white school in Topeka, Kansas.

Creator

Ross, Merrill, interviewee
Dandridge, Deborah, interviewer

Date

2011-06-14

Rights

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.

Citation

Ross, Merrill, interviewee and Dandridge, Deborah, interviewer, “Interview with Merrill Ross,” World War II: The African American Experience, accessed November 18, 2017, https://wwii.lib.ku.edu/items/show/1434.