Posted: May 15, 2012 5:50 PM by Jeanette Trompeter
Updated: Aug 1, 2012 10:46 PM
It's a like history book you can walk through. Fatigues that survived the beaches of Normandy, army jeeps that forged through jungles in Vietnam,and a fleet of retired war birds. They've battled all over the world... but they made it back. And it's just more proof There's No Place Like Home.
There are more volunteers than there are exhibits inside this museum at the Paso Robles airport. But all the exhibits are pretty spectacular. "For some reason in schools today they're more interested in current events than they are of history, what got us here and what made us the country we are today." says Gary Carippo, a museum volunteer.
It's history they* made- those who have served and fought for our country. Within the walls of the Estrella Warbird Museum are massive momentos of the prices paid, the people and pieces of history lost, and those what made it out.
"That's a 1942 Harley Davidson motorcycle that the Harley Davidson people made 25 or 30 thousand for the army or the marines or the navy." says Carippo. "Uh the P-51 aircraft over there, they built 18-thousand of those."
You won't get in a classroom what you'll get from Carippo and his buddies. He is one of about 550 volunteer members of the museum who donate their money and time to preserve the aviation history of American Wars. "The reason for the museum is to preserve history, that's all it's about."
The crew of this mission have become historians. They can tell you about the vehicles and weapons stored here. And the history is easier to tell when its sitting before you, rather than rotting in a junkyard somewhere. Of course, in order to save these things it takes groups like Carippo's to do the work.
They could use some help though. And they've come up with a fun way to get it. Warbirds, Wings and Wheels. The military vehicles will be joined by race cars and hot rods this weekend. "They'll be splattered all around the airplanes so people will come out they're going to have food, hot dogs, hamburgers, ice cream, all kinds of things like that" says Carippo.
Auction and raffle prices inlude a chance to ride in a C-47and a trip to see Jay Leno's personal car collection. It's all in the name of keeping history alive and the knowledge those vets have to share.
It's the fourth annual event and organizers say it should be the biggest yet with some 500 vehicles on display.
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