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Check Six: Dedication of the 154th Fighter Group Hanger – 55+ years ago

September 27, 2017

This photograph shows the 154th Wing hanger under construction.

click on photograph to enlarge

From the HANG 25 Booklet, the history of the Hawaii Air National Guard, November 4, 1946 to November 3, 1971.

The 154th Fighter Group hanger complex was completed on November 6, 1961 and the access taxiway to Honolulu International Airport completed 11 days later. The group began the move from Hickam’s Area 65, which took several months.

On Saturday, February 17, 1962, was the “Grand Opening”. The 10 am Dedication Ceremony speakers were:

Governor William F. Quinn
Major General F.W. Makinney, The Adjutant General
Brigadier General John A. Rouse, Commander, Hawaii Air Defense Division
Brigadier General Valentine A. Siefermann, Commander, Hawaii Air National Guard

The huge hanger doors slowly opened after the speeches. Governor Quinn cut a maile lei across the entrance and the Roosevelt High School Choir inside sang Hawaii Ponoi. A high speed (and low) pass by a single F-102 Delta Dagger (Deuce) signaled the end of the official ceremony. A scramble horn sounded, and two pilots “broke ranks” and ran to their aircraft and were airborne within five minutes.

There was an “Open House” in the afternoon attended by an estimated 10,000 people. There were aerial flights by different kinds of aircraft, static displays, missile loading demonstration – six missiles loaded into a Deuce missile bay in 2:50 minutes. The most popular display was a .50cal machine gun armed with blank ammunition – youngsters fired over 5,000 rounds.

The highlight was a 16 Deuce flyby lead by Major Kenneth L. Fisher. The first passwas a “String of Diamonds, the second pass a “Diamond of Diamonds”.

The momentous day ended with a 15th Anniversary Luau. Over 900 HANG members and guests were served at tables setup in the new hanger.

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