Lincoln aviation community looks to restore chapel into museum
After the Wright Brother's historic flight in 1903, aviation came to Lincoln and became a big part of the state's history.
Many people involved in the Lincoln aviation community are looking to restore that history and repair an empty chapel near northwest 48th and Air Park Road. It was built during the Cold War.
"Lincoln suffered a lot of tragedies in that time with their bomber forces and this is where they effectively came to grieve for that," Historian, Robert Branting said.
More than 25,000 aircraft mechanics trained in Lincoln and it's where Charles Lindbergh, one of histories most famous aviators, first learned to fly in the 1920's.
"Downtown, there was an aircraft factory and a school that was known nationwide and I think that was the school that drew Charles Lindbergh to Lincoln because of it's reputation," Aircraft Mechanic, Darwin Godemann said.
Along with preserving history, the hope for the museum is to spur tourism and community development in Northwest Lincoln.
A meeting on Wednesday allowed the public to give input on ideas for inside the empty chapel as well as going over any necessary costs.
"This chapel just certainly has a great deal of history to it," Branting said.
The aviation community says there is a need to feature this museum and how Lincoln came to be an influential place of aviation.
"I just feel it's important that aviation history in Nebraska is maintained and not forgotten because that's how we learn, that's how society progresses," Godemann said.
A lot of ideas were thrown up in the air as to where to place items in the chapel but more meetings will need to be held in the future. The last part is finding the funds to operate the facility.