Fourteen Spiro GEAR UP seniors traveled to Muskogee, OK. to visit the Muskogee War Memorial Park: Home of the USS Batfish submarine. James Erb, the War Memorial Park and Museum Curator, welcomed students as they entered the museum. He gave them a short presentation about the museum, its artifacts, and his military background. Erb introduced his fellow volunteer and amateur Radio Club member Wade Harris. Next students went for a self-guided tour of the museum and outdoor grounds. Erb and Harris mingled with the students, answering questions and giving more information about the artifacts. The USS Batfish is closed due to the flood in May of 2019. The Muskogee War, Memorial Park Museum, is still open to the public while raising money for the submarine’s repairs and landing pad. The USS Batfish submarine, missiles, and many more large military artifacts are on the park grounds. Before returning to school, the students enjoyed an All You Can Eat lunch provided by GEAR UP at the Golden Corral.
The field trip was sponsored by Eastern Oklahoma State College GEAR UP. Eastern received a $17 million federal GEAR UP grant in 2017 and will serve over 3,000 students in 39 area schools for seven years.