Silent Wings Museum Spreads Wings - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

10/20/02

Silent Wings Museum Spreads Wings

Hundreds came through for the first time this weekend, and it seems that veterans and patrons alike say the Silent Wings Museum had a perfect take-off. The museum has been years in the making and opened this weekend for the first time, first to World War II glider pilot veterans, then to the public.

The Silent Wings Museum takes you back to World War II and tells the often forgotten story of the glider pilots. It was an emotional weekend for hundreds of veterans, as they took a walk back in time.

"I don't think the American people today, or the generation today, have any idea of the scope of WWII, every nation in the world was effected by it in some manner," said Sam Mitchell, glider pilot.

"I went into Normandy, and I spent 306 days from Normandy to the Australian border with the third army," said Bill Greenlee.

And now, more than 50 years later Bill Greenlee reminisces.

"This is wonderful. It's a great run of the whole thing. It's very interesting to me, even brings back a few memories," said Greenlee.

"The movie where they show you exactly how they transported the people into the war zone, and then they have an actual mock up of a full size cargo glider in there, and several different displays that were all impressive," said Sumner Clayton.

It's an opportunity to bring generations together, from veterans to history buffs to students of today.

"I made the drop-in invasion on D-Day in the army, and I saw these gliders fly over. I saw the gliders on the ground some landed good, and I saw some crash. I'll probably have bad dreams tonight, but it's good to see these things years later and realize it can still come back to me real," said Lester Dunn.

From pictures to uniforms to weapons, the Silent Wings Museum has a little bit of everything.

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