Look What's Becoming of Myrtle Beach Air Force Base

Posted by: Peter Coy on May 24, 2007

Myrtle Beach.jpg
Generations of airmen and airwomen would undoubtedly be amazed to see what’s happening to the former Myrtle Beach Air Force Base, which was opened in 1942 and then shut down in 1993 as part of the Pentagon’s “peace dividend” base-closing process. The nearly 4,000-acre base is going new age and features a 900-acre eco-friendly housing development called Withers Preserve. (Hmmm—why not “The Barracks”?) Today the developer, Rob O’Neel, held a press conference in Los Angeles with General Electric CEO Jeff Immelt to announce that homes in Withers Presere will incorporate GE’s ecomagination Homebuilder Program—energy-efficient appliances, lights, etc. The upgrades will add about $5,000 to the cost of each unit.

Reader Comments

Terrence McCarthy

October 15, 2007 8:57 PM

I'm among the generations of airmen amazed. Just spent some time in the Myrtle Beach area. Took a spin through the base, which I worried about in the late 60s when I was stationed there. Back then the concern was that a Russian nuke might flatten the base. That didn't happen. Years later, the base did get nuked. By developers. The plan is for the old base to be transformed into a " market commons " faux community. A retail/ residential theme park thick with cheap, phony buildings. When I lived there, it was a scary place. A kind of purgatory in which I awaited orders to Nam. Now it's going to be a place where people shop and walk around with cell phones stuck to their ears. When I was there, the lifestyle wasn't ( exactly ) to die for. But at least it was real.

Luz Ross

September 14, 2008 6:23 PM

Does Myrtle Beach Air Force Base have a military lodging?

Luz Ross

September 14, 2008 6:24 PM

is there a military lodging facility at Myrtle Beach AFB?

Bob

November 29, 2008 4:31 PM

I was stationed at MBAFB in 1960-1963. I couldn't believe how nice the base looked, at that time the base was only a few years old and looked brand new. I loved the climate and everything about Myrtle Beach. I thought someday I would like to live here when I retired. Well now I'm here, but many things have changed, some for the better and some not so good. The beaches are as good a ever and the entertainment industry is top notch, but the traffic is horrendous, but since I'm retired I can pick and choose the times I travel. Over all, I'm happy to be here and would recommend this area to everyone.

WOODY GRADY

December 5, 2008 2:47 PM

I was stationed at MYR AFB 1960 -1966. I got married while there and have two kids that were born at the base hospital, which I am glad to see is finally being put to good use.

My years there were some of the best of my life.

Tidbits:

My daughter became a flight attendant with US Air and one of her first trips was a stop in Myrtle Beach, landing on the same runway that I worked next to as a weather observer.

One night while working, Air Force One,tail #26000 landed to let a passenger off, while JFK was president. No one else deplaned. It was speculated that Jackie and the kids were on board as Pres. Kennedy was already in St. Thomas VI. The next day news sources reported that Jackie had arrived.
This is the same aircraft that LBJ was sworn in when JFK was assinated and made his last return trip to Washington.

Mooch

December 11, 2008 2:44 PM

It is accesable anyway and the outcome could have been worse. The base has a Piggly Wiggly and the Supply loading docks are labled Suites.
Many trees are down for developers to increase their wealth, it was a sad kinda feeling to see some original buildings let go.
Did find this on the web about the base:
http://home.earthlink.net/~myrtlebeach/

Lou Hari

March 13, 2009 1:23 PM

While never stationed at Myrtle Beach Air Force Base during my 30 year Air Force career, as a pilot, I made many over night visits to it. In my opinion it was one of the more beautiful bases to visit. I visited last October and was very favorably impressed with the commercial development. Lots of nice touches to remember the history of the base including historical markers and Air Force significant street names. Nice that the developers thought to do this.

sewerratt007

June 1, 2009 8:36 AM

I was stationed there June1975-Dec1978, I have been back many times since. Sad to see my old barracks bldg is gone and now is a misquito pond. It was nice to see my old A-7 and A-10 to greet you at the main gate. The town did a good job on that. Base housing is pretty much unchanged. But, I have good memories of the base and my time served there. At least the place is getting used unlike many bases that sit for years to be ghost towns.

Bill

June 19, 2009 12:18 AM

I was stationed at MBAFB from 1965 - 1969 and loved it. We haven't been back in years. We usually spend "beach times" on Hilton Head (less noise, people, traffic and chaos). My daughter just returned from Myrtle. She was telling me about the dedication wall that has been erected at the old base. She had a plaque placed there in my honor for Father's Day. Yes, there was a tear or two thinking about all the good times. Does anyone know how to find the names on the wall or the site of a data base with info? I would love to get in touch with some of my "supply" buddies. Thanks

Stanford L. Shane

July 8, 2009 3:33 PM

I had the pleasure of serving as a photographer in the base photo lab from 1967 to 1968. I married and brought my wife down to sample the Air Force life. We had a great 6 months till I was processed out of service.
Great memories and proud to serve.

Stanford L. Shane, Sgt.
Ashland, MA

Patti Pryor Stephenson

July 26, 2009 10:37 PM

My Dad was stationed at Myrtle Beach AFB from 1957 - 1961. I just returned with my family from a vacation at Myrtle Beach and was curious to see if I could find our home on Tulip St. Much to my surprise the base housing was still there and looked great 51 years later. We were part of the first families to move into the new housing. I was also surprised to see the NCO Mess Hall, Hospital, Control Tower, and Rec Center still standing. Then I saw "Gabreski Lane", which also bought back memories, as Gen. Gabreski was Base Commander back then, and his daughter, Djoni, was a classmate of mine.

I discovered the streets had changed, but after looking at a map I am convinced Tulip St. is now Sweetgum, and our duplex was located at the corner of Tea Rose and Sweetgum.

Can anyone verify Tulip St. in 1959 is now Sweetgum St.?

Gene

July 30, 2009 11:55 PM

I spent a year there in 1968-69, flight line mechanic for the F100 fighters which were then in much use in Vietnam--Our unit was in fact for training both experienced and newly-winged pilots into flying it: The 121st Tactical Fighter Squadron (an activated Air National Guard unit).
I checked MBAFB out on Google Earth, and it shows an image from 2004 with the same runways and what looks like some of the same hangars we used, along with a couple of very neatly lined up aircraft. From what others say here, I guess that's all gone now.

Gene, Oakland Cal

James Bodiford

August 27, 2009 5:34 PM

I was stationed at MBAFB in 1963-1965. I was assigned to the 2066th Comunications Sqd. worked in the Base Communications Center, (teletype, telephone switchboard). I visit Myrtle Beach often since my home is only an hour and a half away. I have to say that the changes that have been made to the old base really looks very nice. It is hard to recognize very many of the old locations and or landmarks since most of them have been demolished and or restored into other facilities. At least they have one something beneficial and useful to the old base, unlike my previous assigned base of Fuchu Air Station, Japan. When it was deactivated, it just went to H---. If anyone out there can relate to the timeline in this comment get in touch

Eric Newsom

September 7, 2009 6:00 PM

was stationed at mbafb hospital from 1974-dec 1977. i have very fond memories of my time there. some of the best(almost) 4 years of my life. i will be there may 2010 and hope to tour some of the areas that i lived and served my country. i wish that i would have kept more of my pictures while stationed there.

Mike Koleski

September 11, 2009 3:25 PM

July 12th 1981 to July 12th 1984 I was with the 354th EMS and worked in the Bomb Dump and Munitions Handling & Line Delivery. A10's are still my all time favorite. Talking with the pilots while my deliveries were getting loaded was very entertaining. They had some wild stories, especially their night lifes. I also wish I would've keep my pictures. The base was beautiful.

John Gladden

September 16, 2009 1:11 PM

I also was stationed at this great base,assigned to the 354 EMS 81-85 worked in the A/R shop with some of the best people I have ever met.I have not been back since I was transfered to England AFB.A great place to have been at 18 years old.Looking forward to a trip back. (Huntsville Alabama)

Terry Byers

October 9, 2009 11:29 PM

I was stationed at Myrtle Beach AFB Jan. 1975 to Nov. 1978. I was was assigned to the 354th Civil Engrs. sqd. I try to go back every year the kids love it there. The movie theater is located on the exact spot where the CES compound was located. I like to sit out in 'Valor Park' and remember...some GREAT times there. Absolutely THE best part of my Air Force career. Anyone who visits Myrtle Beach that was stationed there should have their names added to the 'Wall Of Service'. Located at the static display as you enter from what used to be the main gate.

Chris

October 12, 2009 2:18 AM

Patti, I also lived on Tulip as a child. Yes, it is now Sweetgum.

James M. Bodiford

October 20, 2009 12:16 PM

Just wanted to everyone aware that you can view MBAFB on Google Earth if you have it on your PC's. Even though the base has been transformed into a beautiful area, you can still see the original base layout by using the historical "time slider" button on the tool bar at the top of the google image. The image shows the layout as it was on Janauary 22, 1994-before anything was demolished.
Check it out, it takes the quess wo0rk out of trying the figure out where original bldgs were located. Would like to hear from anyone who was stationed at MBAFB during 1963-1965 assigned to the 2066th Communications Squadron.

derrick little

November 2, 2009 12:40 PM

i plan to join the Air force soon and i hope that i can be stationed here and enjoy this as much as you guys did>

George Rotondo

November 10, 2009 5:45 PM

I was stationed MBAFB, from 1962-1966. I was the Chief Clerk in the 354thCES and I planned to return next year after 43 years. I had some of my best time and meet a lot of great airman there. I can recall one year where the base had snow and the only ones out in it was the Yankees, doing wheelies in the snow. I'm from Boston, so the snow was like second nature. I'm really looking forward in returning, even though Myrtle Beach and the Air Base has changed, but I will relish the memories there. I also understand the City has erected a park dedicated to those airman stationed there, it's called "Warbird Park", they also have wall were you can have your name,rank and years severed. Check it out.

James Bodiford

November 25, 2009 9:27 PM

Note to "Bill"
you can access the Wall of Service members listing at the following web site: It has a search feature where you can plug in the name and it will give you the location of the name panel on the wall.

http://www.cityofmyrtlebeach.com/wall.html

LARRY W. SLOAN

December 28, 2009 8:29 PM

I REPORTED HERE IN JAN 1958.WORKED IN
A&E AUTO PILOT SHOP FOR THE F100.MY SON
WAS BORN HERE OFF BASE, WE HAD NO HOSPITAL AT THAT TIME. WENT TOO AVIANO
AIR BASE ITALY FOR ROTATION DUTY.GOT OUT IN JUNE 1961 BUT REALLY ENJOYED MY
DUTY HERE.

jim carroll

January 9, 2010 10:41 AM

In1978 79 i worked on airbase reroofing most of all bldgs and church ed dickson worldwide contractors work with a bunch of great people.Hung out at My brothers bar alot any comments or any info in this era i would like to hear about doug m. terry g. where u jim c.

Mike Maietta

January 9, 2010 8:26 PM

I was stationed there from April 1973 to March of 1975. My first duty assignment from tech school. I love that base and hated to leave it. Myrtle Beach AFB had to be one of the nicest bases I have been assigned to. I worked on the firing range and enjoyed every minute of every day there. I understand it has built up from when i was there, I have to make a trip there to check it out.

Capt Williams' daughter

January 31, 2010 3:14 AM


we got there towards the tail end of '64 (I think) and stayed till '66/67 ?
My dad some of you who were stationed there during that time might recall: he dressed as the jolly green giant one year. As a kid, I remember the fishing derbies at the lake,Sunday brunches,the golf course between the housing--us kids would hunt for frogs inside the golf holes.

EDWARD HARNISH

February 13, 2010 1:50 PM

I WAS STATION AT MBAFB FROM 1961-1965 I WAS IN CHARGE OF SUPPY WAREHOUSE IN THE CIVIL ENGINEERING SQUARDON. GEORGE ROTONDO IF YOU READ THIS GET IN TOUCH WITH ME. I LIVE IN BILLERIC CELL 1 978 930 3964 CALL ME.

Trevor Gruber

March 5, 2010 8:58 AM

I am searching for my birth grandparents. My mother was born to a woman who lived on the Myrtle Beach Air Force Base in 1957 and she was adopted by my adoptive grandparents (he is a Dentist) in Tampa, FL after being born at St. Joseph's Hosptial in Hillsborough County. The adoption records are closed. I am hoping to find someone who lived on the base during this time who knew of a pregnant woman, approximately 20 years old, who gave birth on January 20, 1957 in Florida. The woman may have hid the pregnancy. We have spent thousands of dollars in adoption searches with no success. Please help if you can. Thanks, Trevor Gruber

Trevor Gruber

March 5, 2010 8:58 AM

I am searching for my birth grandparents. My mother was born to a woman who lived on the Myrtle Beach Air Force Base in 1957 and she was adopted by my adoptive grandparents (he is a Dentist) in Tampa, FL after being born at St. Joseph's Hosptial in Hillsborough County. The adoption records are closed. I am hoping to find someone who lived on the base during this time who knew of a pregnant woman, approximately 20 years old, who gave birth on January 20, 1957 in Florida. The woman may have hid the pregnancy. We have spent thousands of dollars in adoption searches with no success. Please help if you can. Thanks, Trevor Gruber

Trevor Gruber

March 5, 2010 9:00 AM

I am searching for my birth grandparents. My mother was born to a woman who lived on the Myrtle Beach Air Force Base in 1957 and she was adopted by my adoptive grandparents (he is a Dentist) in Tampa, FL after being born at St. Joseph's Hosptial in Hillsborough County. The adoption records are closed. I am hoping to find someone who lived on the base during this time who knew of a pregnant woman, approximately 20 years old, who gave birth on January 20, 1957 in Florida. The woman may have hid the pregnancy. We have spent thousands of dollars in adoption searches with no success. Please help if you can. Thanks, Trevor Gruber

Trevor Gruber

March 7, 2010 2:56 PM

I am searching for my birth grandparents. My mother was born to a woman who lived on the Myrtle Beach Air Force Base in 1957 and she was adopted by my adoptive grandparents (he is a Dentist) in Tampa, FL after being born at St. Joseph's Hosptial in Hillsborough County. The adoption records are closed. I am hoping to find someone who lived on the base during this time who knew of a pregnant woman, approximately 20 years old, who gave birth on January 20, 1957 in Florida. The woman may have hid the pregnancy. We have spent thousands of dollars in adoption searches with no success. Please help if you can. Thanks, Trevor Gruber

Barbara Causey

March 7, 2010 9:20 PM

I am exploring the possibility of getting MBAFB family housing, now called Seagate Village, recognized on the National Register of Historic Places. If you have any photos of the base housing being built, or when Air Force families lived there please contact me.
Thanks for your help!

Barbara Causey

March 7, 2010 9:20 PM

I am exploring the possibility of getting MBAFB family housing, now called Seagate Village, recognized on the National Register of Historic Places. If you have any photos of the base housing being built, or when Air Force families lived there please contact me.
Thanks for your help!

Gary Campbell

March 21, 2010 12:28 PM

I served at MBAFB from june 1981-sept 1984.I was crew chief for A-10A in Falcon section.Rick Mattson,Dale Gould,Rick Price,Paul Miller,Jerry Myers,Micheal Bowen and Tibs were there having the time of their lives as well.Look me up.Lets go see how our home for 4 years has changed.gdcchoppers@aol.com

Gary Campbell

March 21, 2010 12:28 PM

I served at MBAFB from june 1981-sept 1984.I was crew chief for A-10A in Falcon section.Rick Mattson,Dale Gould,Rick Price,Paul Miller,Jerry Myers,Micheal Bowen and Tibs were there having the time of their lives as well.Look me up.Lets go see how our home for 4 years has changed.gdcchoppers@aol.com

Gary Campbell

March 21, 2010 12:28 PM

I served at MBAFB from june 1981-sept 1984.I was crew chief for A-10A in Falcon section.Rick Mattson,Dale Gould,Rick Price,Paul Miller,Jerry Myers,Micheal Bowen and Tibs were there having the time of their lives as well.Look me up.Lets go see how our home for 4 years has changed.gdcchoppers@aol.com

Gary Campbell

March 21, 2010 12:28 PM

I served at MBAFB from june 1981-sept 1984.I was crew chief for A-10A in Falcon section.Rick Mattson,Dale Gould,Rick Price,Paul Miller,Jerry Myers,Micheal Bowen and Tibs were there having the time of their lives as well.Look me up.Lets go see how our home for 4 years has changed.gdcchoppers@aol.com

Gary Campbell

March 21, 2010 12:41 PM

I served at MBAFB from june 1981-sept 1984.I was crew chief for A-10A in Falcon section.Rick Mattson,Dale Gould,Rick Price,Paul Miller,Jerry Myers,Micheal Bowen and Tibs were there having the time of their lives as well.Look me up.Lets go see how our home for 4 years has changed.gdcchoppers@aol.com

walter bahia

March 31, 2010 10:17 AM

1980-84 i was kid growing up here,from what i can remember it was awesome two swimming pools, sneeking into the ammo dump i think, there were lots of bombs lol. gocart track and jumping the fence to hit the water slides. i miss my friend that i new while i was there the only thing i know about him was we called him pj. anyway my parents were Walter R.Bahia and Marianne Bahia, i wish i got to see the base 1 more time before the changes...

Barry Bland

April 13, 2010 6:20 PM

I was born on Myrtle Beach AFB back on April 21st of 1985, I was wondering if anyone knew where i could find some pictures or anything of revilance from around that time...i lived there all the way until the day the base finally closed..my father was stationed there and ive wanted to go back all my life but have been unable...anything would help..you can email me personally at barryb6869@gmail.com thank you

Randall Wiseman

April 24, 2010 9:38 PM

I was stationed at the beach in 1991-92.
I was deployed to King Faud Intl Airport during Operation Desert Shield and Operation Desert Storm.
I worked in the Fuel System Repair Shop (354th CRS).
I am looking for someone that might remember me.
email me if you might be able to help at wiseman76@columbus.rr.com

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BusinessWeek editors Chris Palmeri, Prashant Gopal and Peter Coy chronicle the highs and lows of the housing and mortgage markets on their Hot Property blog. In print and online, the Hot Property team first wrote about the potential downside of lenders pushing riskier, "option ARM" mortgages and the rise in mortgage fraud back in 2005—well ahead of many other media outlets. In 2008, Hot Property bloggers finished #1 in a ranking of the world's top 100 "most powerful property people" by the British real estate website Global edge. Hot Property was named among the 25 most influential real estate blogs of 2007 by Inman News.

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