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In 1914; "The Great War" - WWI - began in Europe. By 1917; the Allied powers of France; England; Italy and others were on the ropes against the German juggernaut. Some altruistic young Americans disagreed with the war. They volunteered to fight alongside their counterparts in France; some in the infantry; some in the Ambulance Corps. A handful of others had a different idea: they decided to learn how to fly. The first of them - a squadron of only 38 - became known as the Lafayette Escadrille. This is their story. Forced to abandon his family's ranch; Blaine Rawlings finds his future in a newsreel chronicling the adventures of young aviators in France. At a small train station in rural Nebraska; William Jensen promises to make his family proud. In New York; spoiled Briggs Lowry embarks on a trans-Atlantic passage. Meanwhile; in France; black expatriate boxer; Eugene Skinner; vows to repay his debt to his adopted racially tolerant country. Together; these American boys arrive at an aerodrome in France; eager to learn how to fly. What they didn't realize was that they were about to embark on a great; romantic adventure; becoming the world's first combat pilots.