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By JUDITH OTT
Correspondent 

Military Preservation Association Plans Display in New Enterprise

 

Judith Ott

Members of the Greater Pennsylvania Military Preservation Association recently visited Morrisons Cove. Pictured above are (from left) Edgar Mouer, Tony Castro and Thomas Gray. The association is planning to have a military education and display at the Southern Cove Power Reunion on June 20 in New Enterprise.

On Saturday, May 2, the weather seemed to cooperate and lifted the spirit of folks in the Cove despite the continuation of COVID-19 hanging in the shadows.

Thomas Gray was meeting up with some friends at the Dollar General store in Loysburg to take a ride in the Cove with a few other enthusiasts who love to preserve our military history. Along the way they were scheduled to make stops to visit residents in the Cove with military interests.

Gray brought his 1977 M151A2 military jeep with a similar trailer which was made in Ebensburg. Tony Castro was driving a 1995 Army Humvee. Edgar Mouer, another member of this group and military veteran, came for the ride but did not bring one of his many military vehicles he collects, restores and enjoys.

Gray has been collecting military memorabilia for more than 50 years. He belongs to a group called the Greater Pennsylvania Military Preservation Association. Members also have been collecting and they have many like interests. This group has a total of 35 operational military vehicles along with other memorabilia.

Gray, a veteran, founded this group in 2005.

"I wanted to get like-minded people together to preserve military history, show appreciation to veterans and educate public on all things military," Gray said.

Currently Gray and his group are looking for an existing structure or ground and artifacts from Bedford County to develop a military history and resource center. Included in the project will be Civil War to present day including uniforms, personal items, gear, weaponry, equipment and a military history and resource center vehicles just to name a few.

This organization will also be working with a company that will help to develop virtual reality displays.

Once the location is obtained the collection will be displayed along with a research and reference library. This building will also have media and meeting rooms and possibly a refreshment area.

Gray was voted volunteer of the year for the Pennsylvania Historical Society and is a 20-year Army veteran. Last year his organization won first place at the National Military Convention in York.

His organization has participated in military events in Boalsburg, Army Heritage and Education Center in Carlisle, numerous Vietnam Veteran celebrations including the Veterans Day Parade in Blair and Cambria counties just to name a few.

This year the group has met with Bob Detwiler and will have a military education and display at the Southern Cover Power Reunion slated for June 20 in New Enterprise. This event will be open to the public at no charge.

If you are a veteran or just interested in preserving military history this group is always looking for members. You may call Gray at (814) 934-3144. There is a small yearly fee to belong. Also, if you have military items you would like to donate to the group or make a monetary donation, email [email protected] or visit its Facebook page at greaterpennsylvaniamilitarypreservationassociation.

 

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