Volume 26 | February 18, 2022
40 year Flashback
Headlines 1982: Medical Museum Planned
Today we enjoy a world-class modern US Army Medical Museum that preserves and tells the stirring history of Army Medicine but where did this amazing complex come from? Who built it and why? What does it take to build a Museum? 
This month we take a journey back to 1982 to see what was happening with the Foundation 40 years ago. Incorporated in 1978, to create a new Museum to house over 200 years of Army medical history, the Foundation founders were knee-deep in fundraising in 1982.

In a January 17, 1982 article published in the San Antonio Light newspaper, Foundation spokesperson Maj. Gen. Spurgeon Neel stated “We have a story to tell, and it’s long over due that it be told in full.” At the time, medical artifacts and relics were stored in Army depots around the US because there was no one place to consolidate and display them.
A large part of the collection was housed and displayed in the basement of an old barracks building on Stanley Rd about a mile from the current Museum. Senior members of Army Medicine decided this location was not fit as an Army Medical Museum and the Foundation was born. Their goal was to raise $5 million to construct a fitting location, near the Army Department Center and School. 
MG Neel continues “We don’t want a warehouse for uniforms or ambulances. We want a place to assist in educating the people we have to rely on in the future.” Education of our medical personnel and our community continue to be a primary goal of today’s Foundation.
Fundraising efforts in 1982 included donation appeals to active and former military and civilian members of Army Medicine, corporate sponsors, and fundraising events such as the annual Combat Medic 10K. 
Foundation Board members in 1982 from left: BG (R) Charles Elia, Robert Bennett, MG (R) Spurgeon Neel, BG (R) Lillian Dunlap, COL (R) Richard Ross, COL (R) Virginia McGary, COL (R) Marvin Nation. 
Today’s Foundation team continues this groundbreaking legacy of making the Army Medical Department Museum a showcase truly worthy of the story it tells and the medical personnel it honors.
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