Wapakoneta Daily News
Learjet installed at Armstrong museum
The Learjet has finally landed.
Following weather delays Monday, crews from Sandy’s Towing finished the job at the Armstrong Air and Space Museum, placing the Learjet 28 on its concrete pad, taking its place as the newest exhibit at the local museum.
On Monday, crews transported the aircraft’s fuselage and wings to the museum from the Neil Armstrong Airport in New
Knoxville. Rain and high winds
prompted the decision to return to the museum on Tuesday to finalize the installation of the historic Learjet.
Much of the morning was spent using a crane to move the fuselage onto the concrete pad; the position of the planes wings were adjusted once the plane was hovering over the pad.
“Its great to see this happening; over two years in the making. It didn’t all happen at once, the weather interrupted us yesterday,” museum Director Dante Centouri
said. “Nothing’s ever easy. But
seeing those little drawings and renderings come to life is just a phenomenal feeling.”
Down the road, museum board members are exploring options to paint the Learjet on site using the original colors.
The aircraft initially arrived at the airport Aug. 5, 2020, on what would have been Neil Armstrong’s 90th birthday. It has been housed at the Neil Armstrong Airport since. In February 1979,
Armstrong broke records in the jet for altitude and horizontal flight at 51,130 feet and ascended 15000 meters in 12 minutes and 27 seconds maintaining a steep ascent.
People came back to see the final placement of the aircraft.
Ed Shroyer of Wapakoneta said he was glad to see them making the installation.
“We like to claim Neil as Wapak’s,” he said.
Linda Knerr of Wapakoneta came out to watch the plane be installed.
“I think it compliments the other plane” she said. “I am thankful that we have this second plane here.”
Jeff Bartlett of Wapakoneta was watching the boom intently and said they have done a decent
job of moving the plane. He is familiar with rigging from his time at an area engine plant and in various building trades.
“It’s all pretty cool. It’s neat for the community,” Bartlett said.