Armed Forces Museum seeks local material

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, October 28, 2015

The Rotary Club of Picayune met Tuesday at Southern Char Steak House where the visiting speaker was Chad E. Daniels, the museum director at the Mississippi Armed Forces Museum at Camp Shelby.

Daniels said he is seeking old stories and artifacts for the museum.

Daniels specializes in general history, military history and museum management and from 1989-1997 served in the United States Air Force and the Mississippi Air National Guard. He was hired by the State of Mississippi in 1999 to develop the Mississippi Armed Forces Museum.

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The museum seeks to honor the service and sacrifices of Mississippi veterans of all branches of service. The exhibits tell the personal stories of American heroes and heroines and serves to educate future generations about the price paid for the freedom that Americans enjoy today, according to the mission statement.

“I would tell people of (Picayune and Pearl River County) to bring their stories to the museum. We’re always looking for stories and rotating exhibits that spotlight different Mississippi veterans from all over the state and if there’s a veteran in Picayune that we can make a story about, we’d love to do that. We do that all the time, in fact the best stories come to us rather than us finding them,” Daniels said.

Daniels explained, one Vietnam War exhibit, which shows an American soldier being tended to while waiting to be airlifted out of battle. He explained how important the medical care is in war and how Vietnam was the first televised war.

Daniels also noted that the World War II exhibit is quite popular at the museum.

“The World War II exhibit is one that has gotten a lot of attention. It covers everything from the sea war to the air war to jungle fighting in the Pacific as well—it’s a myriad of things,” Daniels said.

The museum also makes people think deeply about how instrumental Mississippians have been in defending the United States.

“This museum helps them see where there was a need for national defense, Mississippians were there and when our troops today come through the museum, they see they are carrying the torch,” Daniels said.

The museum is open Tuesday- Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.