Corporal eugene bullard-the son of a georgia former slave. as a member of the french foreign legion, he earned the croix de guerre (one of 15 decorations from the french government). he completed training and joined the lafayette escadrille. despite his record of daring and dedication, he was grounded at the request of american officers attached to the escadrille. when the escadrille pilots were reorganized and incorporated into the american expeditionary force (aef), bullard was denied the commission accorded to other escadrille aviators and to most of the handful of white enlisted men who had earned their wings in regular u.s. army outfits.