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Sat, May 20, 2017

Smyrna, TN To Honor Fallen Blue Angel

Memorial To Capt. Jeff Kuss Will Be Placed At Lee Victory Park

The town of Smyrna, TN is planning a memorial to Capt. Jeff Kuss, the Blue Angels pilot who was fatally injured in an accident at the Great Tennessee Airshow on June 2, 2016.

Capt. Kuss is credited with steering his stricken jet away from populated areas to save lives on the ground.

The town announced plans last week to build a memorial to Capt. Kuss at Lee Victory Park that would feature a retired F/A-18 Hornet in Blue Angels livery... essentially a copy of the aircraft Capt. Kuss was flying that day.

The Murfreesboro Post reports that final approval for the memorial was given to the city by Christina Kuss, Capt. Kuss' widow, in a phone conversation with Smyrna Mayor Mary Esther Reed. It will include a bronze plaque describing the mission and life of Capt. Kuss, as well as U.S., Tennessee, U.S. Navy and U.S. Marine Corps flags. 

Normally, it can take three to five years for a retired aircraft to be acquired by a town for such a memorial, but the Navy was able to make the memorial for Capt. Kuss happen in less than a year. It is scheduled to depart the Naval Air Station Pensacola on May 25 and be shipped to Smyrna, and will be on permanent loan to the community. 

Lesson plans for school children are also being developed for the Smyrna Outdoor Adventure Center celebrating the life and high ideals embodied by Capt. Kuss.

 The city and county will share the costs for the initial construction, custody and ongoing maintenance of the memorial.
 (Image provided by the City of Smyrna, TN)



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