American Airpower Museum to honor CIA personnel killed in Afghanistan
American Airpower Museum to honor CIA personnel killed in Afghanistan; Memorial Day ceremonies planned
At this year’s Memorial Day observance, Monday, May 31st at 12:30 p.m., the American Airpower Museum at Republic Airport, 1230 New Highway, Farmingdale, will be sending its aircraft into the skies in tribute as it honors the memory of the seven CIA employees who were killed in the line of duty in Afghanistan. Participating in the memorial service will be U.S. Congressman Steve Israel and Michael J. Sulick, Director of the National Clandestine Service of the CIA.
Jeff Clyman, President of the American Airpower Museum, stated, ” It is rare that we can publicly acknowledge the CIA’s loss of brave men and women in the line of duty. The knowledge that seven CIA personnel were killed at the hands of a terrorist compels us to pause and remember these patriots who fully understood the mortal danger they faced and yet deliberately went into harm’s way to protect our homeland and our lives.”
Clyman says the museum’s historic aircraft will escort a B-17 bomber that will serve as a platform to drop flowers in Atlantic waters not far from the site of the Twin Towers and the World Trade Center. “For those Americans who have forgotten why we are in combat this flight will be a dramatic reminder that thousands of our fellow citizens were killed here and in Washington, victims of a deliberate attack on the very fabric of our democracy. The CIA, and members of America’s military, are now engaged in a fierce struggle to determine whether our nation, and every country that embraces democracy, will now live free from fear.”
A longtime supporter of the museum, and its mission, Lawrence Kadish, explained, “Let us be clear. Our country is engaged in a deadly, no quarter given, war on terror and the stakes are enormous. On one side is the simple concept of democracy. On the other side is a political philosophy that burns to death little girls in a school classroom when not plotting to turn our cities into mass graves. Those slain CIA employees understood the risk but also understood that our nation is in peril. They knew that courage is required in the face of incredible evil. We must honor them, and all those Americans who have served during this war on terror as we observe Memorial Day 2010.”
Also participating in this program is American Airpower Museum trustee, Major Scott Clyman, USAFR, an F-16 fighter pilot with the 79th EFS. Shortly after the attack on the CIA base his flight was directed to assist Forward Operating Base Chapman in Khost in the event the bomb blast was the precursor to an even larger attack on the base. He will present Mr. Sulick with an American flag he had aboard the fighter at the time of the combat air patrol over Chapman.
The American Airpower Museum will launch its CIA tribute flight on Memorial Day after two days of participating in the air show over Jones Beach that will feature the U.S. Navy’s Blue Angels.
The public is invited to tour the American Airpower Museum flight line all Memorial Day Weekend as its squadron of World War II fighters, bombers and patrol planes is augmented by a B-17 Flying Fortress from the Yankee Air Museum, the P-51 Mustang from Warbirds over Long Island and Airpower’s “Armored Division” that includes armored cars, anti aircraft guns and other period equipment. A donation will be requested at the gate, $15 for adults, $10 for seniors and veterans and $5 for children.