"When I went to Hawaii, they used to come get me on a Jeep to play reveille in the morning and they would take me back at night to play the taps," said White. "That was an important thing for me and it was important to the Navy."
Roosevelt had paved the way for White and his bandmates, and had fostered a wave of job openings for African-Americans to serve in the war-effort nationwide, but racial tension continued.
Morrow remembered suffering discrimination despite his honorable service boosting troop morale with his performances in the Pacific theater.
"I was in a group that was put on the USS Saratoga (CV-3), the aircraft carrier that was used as a troop ship at the end of the war," recalled Morrow. "We sailed all the way across the Pacific to San Francisco from Hawaii, and were then placed on a troop train, just a lot of coaches with nothing but Sailors, Soldiers, Marines ... all the services."
They travelled for five days to Norfolk, Virginia, then went to a reception center where service members were housed according to their branches of service.
"The next morning when I got up and we went into the dining hall to eat, they looked at me and said, 'We need you to come over here.' The other Sailors evidently didn't realize what was happening, but I knew what was happening," said Morrow. "They realized that I was a black Sailor and they told me to get out."
More than 70 years later, the psychological impact of what Morrow endured brought him to tears.
"What was so tough," he sobbed, "was that they had all of these German prisoners eating in the dining hall, and after serving three and a half years in the Navy, I was treated not like a second-class citizen, but like no citizen at all. I was hurt. It just hits me."
Because of such disparaging treatment, he didn't realize how much the B-1 band paved the way for others by volunteering to serve the country during a time of war.
It didn't hit us until years later that we were on the frontline of this thing we call race and integration." - Morrow.
The trendsetting B-1 band helped pave the way for improved race relations in the military. July 26, 1948, President Harry S. Truman signed Executive Order 9981 abolishing segregation in the armed forces, and ordering full integration of all the services. That legacy endures today.
In May 2017, the state of North Carolina and the city of Chapel Hill erected a highway marker to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the B-1 Band's inception and its historical accomplishments.
"We have blacks in the Navy now everywhere, but at that time, that was it," said Morrow. We were the first. And I hope that that we will never be forgotten and it will be there forever, that these Afro-Americans were the first in the Navy other than just [people of servitude]."
Many of the members went on to complete their college education and catapult into successful music careers.
"I was a junior in college when I went into the Navy and when I got back, I went on to finish and got advanced degrees, all due to the Navy," said White, who went onto pursue a career in music and acting.
Morrow also made full use of his GI bill, which came into existence shortly after the war.
"It gave me my college education," he said "It gave me all the experiences that I needed and it all started with the B-1 band. I didn't go the music side; I went to education, and I credit the Navy and the B-1 band for my success in life."