Today In History: 351st Missle Wing Deactives and Signing of Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty
This day in history, something historic happened on a global scale that impacted West Central Missouri. Back on July 31, 1991 President George H.W. Bush and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev signed the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty.
The Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty eliminated the Minuteman II Missles that were scattered throughout this region and based out of Whiteman Air Force Base. Whiteman Air Force Base was home to the 351st Missle Wing from 1963 until its deactivation, which also happened on July 31,1995.
From the stroke of the pen in 1991, it was not until December 15, 1997 when the last missle site, Hotel-11, just north of Dederick, Missouri was imploded, which was two years after the 351st was deactivated.
Today, Oscar-1, still stands at Whiteman Air Fore Base as a museum and is dedicated to the men and women who served during the days of the 351st Missle Wing. Whenever, I get a chance I like to swing by and see this amazing building. Whiteman Air Force Base may be the home of the greatest plane in the B-2 Stealth Bomber, but if it weren't for the history of the missles and the gliders from the time it was Sedalia Army Air Field, who knows if Whiteman would be here today.
I for one am grateful for my experience, from the time that my dad was stationed at Whiteman in 1985. I would not be here for being the proud Air Force brat that I am.
Recently, I have been documenting the locations of the various missle locations that were imploded and am amazed by how the fence lines still stand and in some instances, the signs of the different locations still stand. I hope those that own the land, maintain some of those relics and one day down the line, I hope to show you the documents that I've been making. The fence lines still stand as part of the START agreement in 1991.
In the meantime, it is great to see that Whiteman Air Force Base and the 509th Bomb Wing continue to maintain Oscar I. It is available for tours, if you have access to the Base, you just need to call (660) 687-6560.
Here is a photo of my daughter, niece and nephew in Oscar I, during a recent tour with my dad. I know this one of the biggest things people love to still see on the tour, the Grouch.