Eugene Jacques Bullard Biography

Eugene Jacques Bullard

Born: Oct. 1894?
Birthplace: Columbus, Ga.

Born in Georgia, Bullard moved to France as a young man to escape racism. He joined the French Foreign legion in 1914 at the start of World War I, and became known as the “Black Swallow of Death.” Bullard then joined the French Flying Corps, where he became the first black combat pilot on May 5, 1917. Bullard attempted to join the U.S. military after the United States entered the war, but he was barred because of his race. He served in the French Flying Corps for the remainder of the war, earning the French Legion of Honor, France's highest military honor, and becoming one of France's most decorated war heroes.

Died: Oct. 12, 1961