Close to our home, there is a small airport with mostly corporate jets and specialty charters that flying in and out. However, the airport has a long history and the area surrounding it played a critical role during World War II.
Willow Run Plant was built by Ford Motor Company from 1941 - 1942 and, during the war years, focused solely on building the B-24 bomber. Over 8,600 bombers were built and peak production saw one bomber being built every hour - something many thought was impossible.
It was during this time that the famous "Rosie the Riveter" was born. As men were being called upon to enter the armed services, a dearth of employees needed to perform manufacturing jobs was created. It was at this time that women and minorities stepped to fill that need.
While Aaron and I have never been to the museum before, we were really there to attend a presentation from pilot who flew the A-10 warthog during Desert Storm. It was so interesting to hear about the conflict from a person who flew during that time.
The A-10 was manufactured by Fairchild-Republic in the Early 70's and was just recently announced that it will be phased out from active duty in the near future. Lt. Col. Joe Rutkowski gave a great presentation telling stories, and sharing memories from his deployment in Iraq, and many other bits of information that only a veteran can share. Much more information about the A-10 see the Wikipedia article here.
If you're ever in the area, and have a penchant for World War II or aviation history, stop by the Yankee Air Museum. And, if you're there in August, you may even catch the "Thunder Over Michigan" Air Show!