Eugene Bullard was born in Columbus, Georgia. By his teens, he was tired of racial discrimination, so he stowed away on a ship bound for Scotland. From Scotland he went to Paris, where he settled down and became a boxer.
When WWI began, he volunteered and became a machine gunner. A couple years into the war, Eugene became a pilot and joined the French Air Service, making him the first African-American military pilot and of the few black combat pilots in WWI.