I’m a sucker for a good documentary. And The Jacket: The True Story of a Second Class Hero looks good. Not just because the story of Lt. Col. Alexander Jefferson (USAF Ret.) is filled with action and suspense (Lt. Col. Jefferson was a Tuskegee Airman who spent the better part of a year as a POW in WWII.) I’m looking forward to seeing this because it’s a rare look into the life of a man who laid everything on the line for his country, and how many of the people in that country paid him back with racism and hatred. Still, he rose above all that. Thankfully. I’m really hoping I smell Oscar nom here y’all.
Gotta say, with this film and Max Brooks’ look at WWI fighting heroes The Harlem Hellfighters, it looks like 2014 is the year people get a glimpse of the history that has been hidden from so many of us. It’s about time.
Read the entire PR piece after the jump!
The Jacket: A Documentary about a Tuskegee Fighter Pilot’s Struggle with Racism, On and Off the Battlefield
New film tells the story of Lt. Col. Alexander Jefferson (USAF Ret.), who was imprisoned in a Nazi P.O.W. camp and lived to tell about it.
FERNDALE, Mich., May 8, 2014 /PRNewswire/ — In many ways, retired Lt. Col. Alexander Jefferson (USAF) was fighting a fierce battle before, during and after his days as a fighter pilot in World War II. Jefferson, 92, was shot down during a mission and spent nine months in Stalag Luft III, a Nazi P.O.W. camp and location of “The Great Escape.”
It’s a fascinating account of bravery, perseverance and character. When he wasn’t fighting for his country, Jefferson was battling racism in his country.
Mike Rott, owner of Dynasty Media Network in Ferndale, Mich., is in the process of making a documentary about Lt. Col. Jefferson’s life and legacy. Titled The Jacket: The True Story of a Second Class Hero, this film recalls his trials and tribulations from early childhood racism in America, to his segregated military experience and overseas combat deployment in WWII.
While in Germany, Jefferson came face to face with racism of another type, the Holocaust. He tells of his traumatic walk through Dachau Concentration Camp, two days after it’s liberation by General Patton’s Third Army.
Jefferson was a member of the Tuskegee Airmen, the first African-American military aviators in the United States armed forces. He put his life on the line in WWII, only to be met with bigotry and hatred upon his return. In a chilling narrative from the film, he recalls the day of his arrival from overseas deployment in 1945.
Rott’s company has funded the film so far but needs an additional $150,000 to complete the project as a feature documentary. In order to generate this capital, Rott has launched an Indiegogo campaign that can be viewed at www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-jacket-documentary-tuskegee-fighter-pilot-pow-concentration-camp-witness.
Contributions of any amount are welcome. Depending on their donation levels, backers will receive behind-the-scenes videos, DVD’s of the film, models of Jefferson’s fighter plane, autographed copies of Jefferson’s book (“Red Tail Captured, Red Tail Free”), Tuskegee Bomber Jackets and VIP invitations to the film premiere.
“Our goal is to share Alex’s story with as many people, all over the world, as we possibly can,” said Rott.
For further information, including a film trailer, visit www.indiegogo.com/projects/the-jacket-documentary-tuskegee-fighter-pilot-pow-concentration-camp-witness.