THE MUSEUM HISTORY
Dann Spear, founder of the museum, started his collection of military memorabilia as a young boy of ten. Soon, he was amassing his collection of military memorabilia, patches, and photos obtained from friends to whom he wrote while they served in the Vietnam War. He had a dream of someday creating a museum to honor veterans. As a child, he was invited to a reunion of World War II veterans of the Flying Tigers-AVG who flew in China. He met Tex Hill, a squadron leader and fighter ace who gave him a signed photo that read "to my young friend Danny." Tex included a note saying he hoped the photograph would make a nice addition to his museum.
Creation of the Museum
Dann and his good friend John Showers began work on what was to be the first museum building in 1981. The official opening occurred in January 1985 with Brigadier General Don Matson as guest speaker. The museum continued to grow through the years with the addition of second and third wings of the first building between 1985 and 1999. The second building was completed in 2009.
The Museum's Enduring Spirit
The museum is a 501c(3) tax-exempt organization and accepts donations. Colonel Nicoll Galbraith Jr, contributed the funds for the construction of the second building, the final building that includes a library of over 4,200 binders and books on military history. The museum board of directors members continue Dann's pledge that the museum will always be free to the public and will remain a celebration of the efforts and sacrifices of veterans rather than a glorification of war.