Flying Tiger Heritage Park and Museum

Flying Tiger Heritage Park and Museum 桂林飞虎队遗址公园 Měiguó Fēihǔduì Guìlín Yízhǐ Gōngyuán

Xīnqū Zhèngshì Luòchéng Kāiyuán

Shì Línguì

Guìlín

桂林市临桂新区正式落成开园

China

Aircraft collection

Douglas C-47A Dakota VH-XUX/2100550/N-U5 "Buzz Buggy", Flying Tiger Heritage Park

VH-XUX/2100550/N-U5 Douglas C-47A Skytrain

 

Honoring the legacy of the Americans and Chinese who bravely fought together defending freedom, the American Flying Tigers Guilin Heritage Park was opened March 28 in Lingui County, Guilin, Guangxi. U.S. Consul General in Guangzhou Jennifer Zimdahl Galt and U.S. Embassy Air Force Attaché Colonel Mark Swentkofske joined several distinguished guests, including Chinese Vice Premier Madam Liu Yandong, Guangxi Party Secretary Peng Qinghua, and representatives of the American Flying Tigers Historical Organization (FTHO), at the opening.

“The exploits of the Flying Tigers are truly the stuff of legend.  When most of the news from the war was bleak, reports of the Flying Tigers’ victories, sacrifices, and courage provided hope to the peoples of both our countries,” CG Galt told those gathered to celebrate the new park. “Throughout the war, American soldiers in China were touched by the kindness and bravery of their Chinese partners. Brave men and women provided assistance and shelter to thousands of American airmen whose planes were shot down for a cause they shared.  Bonds like these are lasting.  We can’t forget the bravery and sacrifice of men and women on both sides who came together for a common cause.”

The Heritage Park is located at the Yang Tang Airfield, which served as the command base from which the Flying Tigers launched missions throughout southern China. The project is the result of American and Chinese cooperation to remember and honor this important legacy.  FTHO approached Chinese officials with a proposal to build the park and restore General Chennault’s Command and Operations cave located in Guilin, and the Chinese quickly agreed to contribute land and funding for the project. The FTHO then raised thousands of dollars and donated hundreds of pieces of memorabilia; the Chinese government matched funds 4:1.

“Ultimately, seventy years after this war ended, we also celebrate the future and how our two countries can work together to create a more peaceful and prosperous world,” CG Galt said.  “It reminds us of the importance of our countries’ relationship – and the fact that we have to get it right, for the benefit of our two countries and the global community. The only way to do that is to work together, as we did at critical moments in the past.”

Today the Museum building within the Heritage Park features architecture reflective of the fighter planes used during the Flying Tigers missions, including a “shark’s teeth” entrance, a domed glass ceiling resembling the fighter pilots’ cockpit dome, and windows representative of P40 fighter planes’ exhaust stacks.  Inside, the Flying Tigers are brought to life through displays of photographs, paintings, and memorabilia.  The Museum is located just outside General Chennault’s cave, which is being painstakingly restored.

The FTHO delegation VIPs included Chairman of the Board Maj. Gen. (Ret) James Whitehead Jr., Honorary Chairman Florence Fang, FTHO’s President Larry Jobe, Flying Tigers Commander General Claire Chennault’s daughter Cynthia Chennault, General Chennault’s granddaughter Nell Calloway, and veteran pilot of the China-Burma-India Theater of Operations “Jay” Vinyard.

Press release

Public Affairs Section United States Embassy, Beijing

为纪念曾一起勇敢战斗捍卫自由的美国人和中国人的遗产,美国飞虎队桂林遗址公园于3月28日在广西桂林临桂县开园。美国驻广州总领事郭瑾和美国大使馆空军武官上校史文刚与包括中国副总理刘延东女士、广西党委书记彭清华以及美国飞虎队历史协会(FTHO)的代表在内的嘉宾们一起参加了开园仪式。

“飞虎队的功勋是真正的传奇。当来自战争的消息大多凄凉的时候,关于飞虎队胜利、牺牲和勇气的报道为我们两国人民带来了希望,” 郭瑾总领事对齐聚一堂庆祝新园的嘉宾们说。“在整个战争期间,在中国的美国士兵被他们中国伙伴的善良和勇敢所感动。勇敢的男女们为了共同的事业,为飞机被击落的成千上万美国飞行员们提供帮助和庇护。像这样的纽带是持久的。我们不能忘记为共同事业走到一起的两国男女们的勇敢和牺牲。”

该遗址公园位于秧塘机场,该地址曾作为飞虎队在整个华南执行使命的指挥基地。该项目是美中合作缅怀和纪念这一重要遗产的结果。FTHO向中国官员提出了建立公园、修复陈纳德将军位于桂林的山洞指挥所的建议。中方很快就同意为项目提供土地和资金。FTHO随后募集了数千美元,捐献了数百件纪念品。中国政府提供了4倍的资金。

“最终,在战争结束的70年后,我们也庆祝未来以及我们两国怎样能一起努力创造一个更加和平和繁荣的世界,”郭瑾总领事说。“它提醒我们两国关系的重要性—以及为了我们两国和全球社会我们必须把它处理好这一事实。这样做的唯一途径就是一起努力,就像我们在过去的关键时刻所做的一样。

今天遗址公园里的博物馆建筑的主体建筑风格反映了飞虎队执行任务时使用的战斗机,包括一个“鲨鱼齿”入口,一个像战斗机飞行员驾驶舱穹顶的圆拱形玻璃屋顶,和代表着P40战斗机排气管的窗户。在里面,通过照片、图画和纪念品的陈列,飞虎队员们被赋予了生命。该博物馆坐落于陈纳德将军的山洞外面。这个山洞正在被精心修复。

FTHO代表团的贵宾包括董事会主席小詹姆斯∙怀特黑德少将(已退休)、荣誉主席方李邦琴、FTHO总裁拉里∙乔伯、飞虎队司令陈纳德将军的女儿辛西娅∙陈纳德、陈纳德将军的外孙女内尔∙卡洛韦以及中缅印战区的退伍飞行员“杰”维尼亚尔德。