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Wild Blue Goner

reception center webThe Personnel Processing Administration Reception Center at Olmstead Air Force Base, 1955.


Fifty years ago today, on Nov. 19, 1964, Middletown changed forever.

On that day, Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara announced that the Pentagon would close the Olmsted Air Force Base in Middletown.

Unless you were alive then, it is difficult to comprehend the impact of that announcement.

Consider just a few facts.

Olmsted was the biggest military installation in all of Pennsylvania.

The base by far was the town’s largest employer. Nearly 11,000 civilians worked at Olmsted. That’s more people than live in all of Middletown today.


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