Goose Bay's storied air force base gets a revamped military museum
The Goose Bay military base has been in operation since 1941
Canadian Forces Base Goose Bay has a new museum to highlight its storied history in Labrador.
"As soon as I seen it, it brought back so many memories," said Goose High School graduate Jackie Compton, standing in front of the sign, prominently displayed on one of the walls of the museum.
"I just had to get a picture with it," she said.
The base has been in operation for nearly 78 years and was originally built as a staging area for Canadian and American aircraft heading to Britain during the Second World War.
"We wanted it to be a self-guided tour and to make sure that we include many of the artifacts and all the stories that went along with it," said Warrant Officer Jerry Kean, the base's heritage officer.
Honorary colonel Geoff Goodyear, who flew helicopters in the area at a time when the Allied forces were at their peak, said a highlight for him was seeing displays on German and Dutch fighters jets.
"Watching these things pass underneath you while you were flying along in a helicopter brings back exciting memories," Goodyear said.
I really do hope that in 15, 20 years that in this museum they're going to be covering some of the things we're doing today.- Lt.-Col. Stephane Racle
"It's an incredibly varied and rich history here from a military and aviation perspective so somebody could come in [to the museum] completely new to the area … and hopefully leave with an interest about what went on and what continues to go on here."
Base commander Lt.-Col. Stephane Racle said the idea was to make a space that was more accessible, easier to navigate and more welcoming than the space it is replacing.
"You need to consider the past to understand the present and to make sure you're well set up for the future," Racle said.
"I really do hope that in 15, 20 years that in this museum they're going to be covering some of the things we're doing today."