ABILENE, Texas (PRESS RELEASE) – The Chamber’s Military Affairs Committee is proud to announce the Dyess Memorial Park has won the 2020 Installation and Mission Support Center Honor Award for the United States Air Force best design in the Air Force.
Typically awarded to a military installation, this Air Force award is significant to Abilene due to the fact that it was awarded to our community at-large.
“The Dyess Memorial holds a special place in my heart,” said Greg Blair, AEP Texas and Military Affairs Chair. “This memorial is an excellent representation of how the military and community can come together to create a space, in a very thoughtful way, to honor the fallen.”
The unique memorial pays tribute to the 79 Dyess Airmen and civilian employees who have perished in line-of-duty incidents. Mitch Wright, an Austin landscape architect, researched and designed the impressive structure that features a large arc-shaped formation that captures sunlight and directs a beam to a granite plaque sitting on a limestone pillar. Each of the plaques honors victims of a fatal crash, and the sun’s beam hits the plaque on the anniversary day and time of the tragedy.
Mitch Wright is the grandson of late Abilene civic leader William P. “Dub” Wright, who is credited as one of the leaders who helped to establish Dyess AFB here in the 1950s.
“This memorial is something our community is incredibly proud of,” said Gray Bridwell, VP of Military Affairs. “This pays tribute to the men and women who have sacrificed it all for our freedoms while reinforcing the commitment our Abilene community has for those who serve our country.”
The park is located adjacent to the Dyess Museum in the 800 block of Arnold Boulevard, near the intersection of Arnold and Military Drive and is open to the public.
The United States Air Force Design Awards Program was established in 1976 to publicize and recognize projects that have achieved the Air Force goal of design excellence as it relates to the natural and built environment. Over its history, it has become a viable and important program that is institutionalized within the Air Force. It is widely recognized throughout the federal government and is supported by the enthusiastic participation of notable professionals in the private sector. Much more than simply an awards competition, the winning projects establish the benchmark of design excellence that the Air Force expects for all its facilities and installations.
To view all of the recipients of the 2020 USAF Design Awards, click here.
For more information on the Chamber’s Military Affairs Committee, visit abilenechamber.com.
The Military Affairs Committee is a public-private partnership of the Abilene Chamber of Commerce, Development Corporation of Abilene, individuals and businesses. Through its 300 members, MAC advocates for expansion and preservation of missions at Dyess and cares for the needs of military members and their families.
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