From THE WAR, Episode 5:
NARRATOR: Fifteen members of Rushton’s Depot Company were hit; he was one of them, wounded in the leg by shrapnel. He was carried to a hospital ship offshore, the only wounded black man aboard. After his wounds were treated he asked if he could have a haircut. The ship’s barber refused.
WILLIE RUSHTON: When I got up there he told me, he said, “I can’t cut your hair.” So a couple of white Marines asked him, said, “ Why can’t you cut his hair?” Said, “You don’t have to give him no style, just cut his hair off. All he wants is some of that hair off his head.” So he said, “No, I can’t cut his hair.”
NARRATOR: Then, the captain intervened.
WILLIE RUSHTON: The captain of the Red Cross ship came down there and told that barber, say, “I’m telling you for the first and the last time. I don’t care who comes on this ship, if he’s an American soldier, whether he’s black or white, or whatever”, say “I want you to cut his hair, you know, just cut his hair.” He said, “Don’t ever make a remark like that in anymore.”
NARRATOR: Private Rushton got his haircut.