Green Cove Springs, FL – On my way home from St Augustine, I decided to drop by the Military Museum of North Florida in Green Cove Springs. It’s a small, but enthusiastically run museum just off of Florida Highway 16 next to the Reynolds Airpark airport and the Reynolds Industrial Park. The location is important because Reynolds Airpark used to be Naval Air Station Green Cove Springs, Benjamin Lee Field. A training field during World War 2, pilots were trained to fly the F6F Hellcat and operate from aircraft carriers at Lee Field.
The museum is currently a work in progress, with a number of the exhibits being rearranged to better present their material. Even though it’s located on the site of a former World War 2 Navy base, it doesn’t focus on a single service branch or war, it instead covers all services and most all of the United States’ wars. The museum has artifacts and items including vehicles, aircraft engines, uniforms, equipment, weapons, maps, photos, and flags. Among the vehicles in their collection are two I’d never seen before: a LARC-LX and an MQM-33. The LARC-LX, at almost 63 feet long, 20 feet high, and 27 feet wide is a massive four-wheel drive amphibious lighter; it looks like a cross between an amphibious assault vehicle and a large industrial dump truck. The MQM-33 is a post-World War 2 era propeller driven target drone.
When I visited, I was lucky enough to meet the museum’s Executive Director Chris Mayer, a Battle of Britain survivor and retired Royal Marine, who gave a couple and I a tour of the museum. If you visit and he’s there, definitely take the time to listen to him talk about the Battle of Britain and his experiences.
The museum is a 501c3 organization and is staffed solely by volunteers like Mr. Mayer. The admission is free, but please consider making a donation or become a Friend of the Museum (there are applications in their brochures at the museum and I have a handful of them), it will help them continue to improve and operate the museum. You can also find out more about the museum via their Facebook page.
I'm an Amateur Radio Operator, Radio Monitoring enthusiast, Motor Sports fan, and Blogger. Most of my amateur radio activity is voice because I mostly operate from a mobile station (listen out for me operating from Jekyll Island, IOTA NA-058). On the radio monitoring side of things, I enjoy listening to military aviation, Fire/EMS, and USCG/Federal comms. I'm a sports car/touring/GT, Formula 1, and IndyCar racing fan who's become disenchanted with NASCAR racing.
Due to my job, I split time between Savannah and Brunswick, GA
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