Tuskegee Airman visits Charleston church summer camp

VIDEO: Tuskegee Airman visits Charleston church summer camp

NORTH CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - One of the Tuskegee Airman who served as Paymaster, Colonel Enoch Woodhouse II talked with children at an educational summer camp at Royal Missionary Baptist Church. The Tuskegee airmen were the first African-American group of airmen to serve in the U.S. military.

"After high school there were two places where you could go, army recruiting or navy recruiting," says Col. Woodhouse.

Col. Woodhouse made a decision between the army and navy at the age of 17.  When he chose the army he says he didn't know the impact he would have.

"When I went army, little did I realize that being segregated that I would be segregated into, the finest, most intellectual, the most dedicated group," says Col. Woodhouse.

He says being apart of this group had a positive impact on his life.

"That's what inspired me and that's what encouraged me, to be with men of valor, courage and intelligence to rise and surmount obstacles," say Col. Woodhouse.

Overcoming obstacles is the message he gave to the youth at Royal Missionary Baptist Church's education summer camp. The event was organized by The Hiram Mann Local Tuskegee Airman Chapter in Walterboro.

"When things seemed incredible, when things seemed impossible but you went through it regardless," says Col. Woodhouse.

As a Yale Law school graduate, a trial lawyer for 40 years, and a retired Air Force Colonel, he says Faith in God kept him going.

"When I think about what my generation had to go through to see you people here, tears come to my eyes, I'm proud," says Col. Woodhouse.

During his visit, Col. Woodhouse visited Mother Emanuel AME Church and he says in looking at the date it was built, he couldn't help but feel encouraged and inspired by the church's history and what it has been through.