About Us

Calling All Aviation Enthusiasts!

Board of Directors

Aviation Heritage Park at Basil Griffin Park on Three Springs Road was instigated by the arrival of a special, retired airplane. Phantom 550, an F4-D Phantom II flown by Bowling Green native Dan Cherry, retired Brigadier General of the United States Air Force, shot down a North Vietnamese MIG-21 fighter in a combat mission during the Vietnam War in 1972. He flew 295 missions, and also commanded the Air Force Thunderbirds.

During a visit to the National Museum of the United States Air Force at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, General Cherry learned the jet was grounded and on display at the Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW) hall in Enon, Ohio and went to observe. After speaking to and arranging with the local VFW, the plane was disassembled to prepare for the journey to Bowling Green where it will help honor local military aviators.

Along with General Cherry, several more of America's finest aviators from this area will be honored. Bert Hall, one of America's first combat aviators; Victor Strahm, Kentucky's first WWI Flying Ace; Johnny Magda, commander of the Navy Blue Angels; and Ken Fleener, a retired Brigadier General. Currently a Panther is being restored and will soon join the Phantom at the Park. The Panther is in honor of Johnny Magda.

The park is an ongoing project. Eventually the Aviation Heritage Park will host several different airplanes. The park is designed and constructed to include a landscaped area that accommodates up to six more planes. The Phantom 550 has been painted its original green and brown Vietnam Era colors to showcase the plane.

Click on "Site Plans" to see what's in store for the park. Visit "How to Help" for information on what you can do to volunteer or donate funds.

On April 16, 1972, Major Dan Cherry, with Captain Jeff Feinstein of the 13th Tactical Fighter Squadron, in F-4D 66-7550, shot down a MIG-21 of the North Vietnamese Air Force. The painting is by world-renowned Aviation artist, Lou Drendel. Limited edition lithograph prints are available signed by the artist as well as Dan and Jeff.

Visitor InformationNewsEventsArchivesAviator History

Aviation Heritage Park, Inc., Kentucky