Keith Moore Post 440 in New Salem, N.C., uses a Vietnam War-era AH-1 Cobra helicopter parked on a concrete pad in a grassy area outside, as seen on the post’s page on The American Legion’s Centennial Celebration site.
The post was looking for a static display to put in front of its building, but wanted something bigger than small artillery pieces. In 2000, they applied for the helicopter and were approved in 2001 by the Army’s Tank-Automotive and Armaments Command. This particular Cobra – technically on loan from the Army as long as the post remains active – was built in 1968 and in service until lightning destroyed its electrical systems.
The North Carolina Air National Guard took over delivering the helicopter from New York state to New Salem in April 2001 and made it part of a training mission. A local towing company brought it from there to the post’s site; costs for the entire process were paid by donations from the community.
Find more Legion stories at www.legion.org/centennial.