Boy, are we lucky to live where we do and have all the wonderful things at our fingertips whenever we want or need them.
In this case I am referring to one of the new attractions coming to South Miami-Dade, specifically the Miami Military Museum that should be opening soon next to the Gold Coast Railroad Museum and Zoo Miami. All this is being made possible by Anthony Atwood, CWO3, USN (Ret.), museum executive director.
If you have not yet met Tony, who earned his PhD in history at FIU, make it your business to do so. Since I have known him he has been working tirelessly to bring about this museum so that we may be familiar with and share history with our friends and families.
As an example, on one of my many trips to visit schools in our area, one visit in particular stands out. I had just returned from a fantastic trip to Hawaii where I was able to visit Pearl Harbor and all of the things that have meant so much to me over the years. On this particular visit I was talking to middle school students and my first question to the class was if they were all familiar with Pearl Harbor?
I could tell by the sideways glances and shaking heads in the class that hardly any of them had any idea on what I was about to speak. To make it easy, I asked if they knew where Pearl Harbor was. This time several people raise their hands and were quick to volunteer that it must have been near Palmetto Bay, Pinecrest, CutlerBay, or one of the other many segments of South Dade.
I couldn’t wait to bring out my display model of the USS Arizona, a Japanese Zero, and an American F6M fighter plane. As some of you may recall, the Arizona was one of the many American ships sunk in Pearl Harbor as a result of a “sneak” attack by the Japanese military. Some 1,100 young American lives were lost when a Japanese bomb struck the magazine, where most of the ship’s ammunition were stored.