Army Aviation Museum re-opens

Docent and Tour Guide Fred Zayas shows a demonstration on an aircraft
Docent and Tour Guide Fred Zayas shows a demonstration on an aircraft(Nick Brooks)
Published: Jun. 26, 2020 at 12:02 PM CDT
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FORT RUCKER, Ala. (WTVY) -- It has been two weeks since Fort Rucker re-opened the installation to visitors.

In that time frame the Army Aviation Museum has reopened as well.

"It's good to be back open and good to be available for the public and we continue our mission to educate soldiers and visitors to Army Aviation," said Army Aviation Museum Director Robert Mitchell.

The museum had been closed for three months to visitors during COVID-19.

"So, we have a foundation and a gift shop that raises money so without the gift shop being open the flow of money into the museum obviously was very limited," Mitchell added.

Docent tour guide Fred Zayas has done two stints as a tour guide with the museum.

“Well I get pretty enthusiastic about Army Aviation,” Zayas continued. “I’ve been an amateur historian since I was a teenager when I first started flying.”

He loves talking about the history behind these aircraft he just hopes someone will adopt that same love.

"I always think there's going to be at least one person, hopefully a younger one, who will decide to dream and become excited and be motivated one day to say I like to eventually be part of this history myself," said Zayas.

The museum has been open for nearly two weeks but still Zayas has yet to do what he loves.

“I hope that people will decide to come back out so we can get the tours cranked up again,” Zayas added. “I miss giving them.”

As for the museum, visitors can expect something new in October of 2021.

“It will be a one of a kind facility for aviation certainly and its primary focus will be the training of soldiers and education in professional development however it will be open to the public on a limited basis,” Mitchell finished.

Copyright 2020 WTVY. All rights reserved.

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