V-2 Day at White Sands Missile Range

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Well-Known Member
Jan 18, 2009
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Had a great day Thursday at WSMR that I thought I'd pass along. Sorry no pics yet but I'll get some from WSMR PA this week hopefully.

On 18 November 2004 WSMR unveiled the newly restored V-2 missile at the WSMR Museum and Missile Park. As the senior USAF guy at WSMR, I was lucky enough to be invited to participate...

The day started with a presentation/Q&A by Konrad Dannenberg and Gil Moore. Konrad Dannenberg was one of the original Operation Paperclip Germans who was at Peenemunde and came over with von Braun. Gil Moore was a V-2 payload specialist with New Mexico State University who worked on the WSMR launches in the early days. They spoke about their experience both in Germany pre-WWII and afterward as well as the time at WSMR. Lots of cool stories.

Once the seminar was complete, we went to the museum where they had the ribbon cutting ceremony for the new V-2 exhibit. The V-2 is the one that's been in the Missile Park for years, but had deteriorated to the point they needed it restored. It was sent to the Kansas Cosmosphere Space Center for restoration and appears to be one of the most complete original V-2s remaining. The museum has constructed a new facility that will display the V-2 on its side indoors, out of the elements.

I was lucky enough to be one of the "ribbon cutters" -- there were six including Konrad Dannenberg, Gil Moore, Brig Gen Reese (WSMR Commanding General), Tomas Chavez (WSMR Historical Foundation), and CDR Greg DeVogel (WSMR Deputy for Navy). Woo Hoo!

It was also great to meet a bunch of the other people attending. Got to meet Dr Don Thomas (STS-65/70/83/94), the gentleman who led the restoration at Cosmosphere, as well as two members of the Canadian Arrow X-Prize team (Geoff Sheerin -- team leader, and Lou van Amelsvoort).

Like I said I hope to get some pictures of events from WSMR PA shortly. Just had to pass along my luck to be stationed here for such an event...
Originally posted by Conan
As the senior USAF guy at WSMR,


Can I have your autograph? Are you married? (No, wait....)

My daughter's and my dream vacation is taking in WSMR, Meteor Crater, the Trinity site, Roswell, the Airplane Graveyard and the VLBA radio telescope. All that cool stuff down there and you're like RIGHT THERE. Man, if I could have been stationed there even once, I'd have stayed in. But once you were Northern Tier SAC, everyplace else was the banana belt and you didn't go there longer than a TDY. We considered our tech school at Chanute to be tropical duty. I suppose if they'd let me have one tour there I'd have chained myself to a display model and have to be cut loose to be sent back to the Great White.