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Contact: Bob House, (830) 868-7128, ext. 244
Contact: Sherry Justus, (830) 868-7128, ext. 245
Stonewall, TX – The public isinvited to participate in a new special event at Lyndon B. Johnson National Historical Park on Saturday, May 5, when the National Park Service, the International Bird Dog Association (IBDA) and Company G, a group of professional re-enactors from Camp Mabry in Austin, Texas, will join forces to remember and reveal some of the experiences of military life during the Korean and Vietnam Wars.
Members of the IBDA will fly in to the LBJ Ranch at 9:30 a.m. on the ranch’s private airstrip and conduct flight demonstrations at 11:00 a.m. and 1 p.m. Their Bird Dog aircraft, which fulfilled the missions of observation, reconnaissance and forward air control with the U.S. Army, the Air Force and the Marines during the 1950s and 1960s will be on display from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. near President Johnson’s own airplane hangar and taxiway.
In addition to the vintage planes and their pilots, members of the Camp Mabry Company G reenactment group will share the everyday experiences of the infantry soldier of forty years ago and the critical relationship between their missions on the ground and the Bird Dog aircraft upon which they relied. With them will be various vital equipment used by soldiers in the field, including the radios used to call in air support, machine guns, an M-79 grenade launcher, and a Jeep. In addition, a Texas Department of Public Safety rescue helicopter will also be on the scene for public viewing.
This event on the LBJ Ranch provides a rare opportunity to explore the combination of men and machines that fought together in past American engagements. National Park Service bus tours of the entire LBJ Ranch include a stop so that visitors to the ranch may chat with the pilots and view the aircraft. Visitors may choose instead to take a specialized shuttle bus directly to the scene of the action. The hours for the event are from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Bus tours of the ranch depart from the LBJ State Park and Historic Site Visitor Center near Stonewall, Texas beginning at 10:00 a.m. Fees are as follows: $3.00 for ages 62 and older; $3.00 for ages 7-17; $6.00 for ages 18-61; and ages 6 and younger, free. The shuttle bus to the event also departs from the state park visitor center and is free of charge. Access to the event must be either by regular bus tour or via shuttle bus.
For further information or specific driving directions to the LBJ State Park and Historic Site Visitor Center, located 14 miles west of Johnson City or one mile east of Stonewall on U.S. Highway 290, please visit www.nps.gov/lyjo, or call (830) 868-7128, ext. 244.