For Immediate Release: July 11, 2018
Contact: Shana Miller (615) 278-2389 or Smiller@rutherfordchamber.org
Blue Angel Memorial for Capt. Jeff Kuss Completed
Smyrna, Tenn. – The Capt. Jeff Kuss USMC Memorial is now complete at Lee Victory Recreation Park in Smyrna, Tennessee. The F/A 18-C Blue Angel Hornet featured at the memorial is on permanent loan from the National Naval Aviation Museum in Pensacola, Florida. The memorial is dedicated to Marine Captain Jeff Kuss who on June 2, 2016, lost his life in a tragic in-flight accident while flying as Blue Angel #6 in practice for the Great Tennessee Air Show.
Since 1970, the Blue Angels have been a big part of the Town of Smyrna. “Anytime the Blue Angels fly, there is a sense of excitement across the community,” said Smyrna Mayor Mary Esther Reed. "Raising money for the $1.4 million memorial was a grassroots effort that began in Smyrna and Rutherford County, then expanded throughout the state and culminated with donations from across the country."
The memorial is a site to behold day and night, the illumination of the Hornet is amazing after sunset. Families are encouraged to come out and see the memorial, embrace the legacy of the Blue Angels in Smyrna and look to the future with the upcoming 2019 Great Tennessee Air Show.
About Captain Jeff Kuss, USMC
Marine Captain Jeff Kuss was a decorated pilot who, through his career, accumulated more than 1,400 flight hours and 175 carrier landings. Captain Kuss served in Afghanistan and earned the Strike Flight Air Medal and the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal during his time in the military. He joined the U.S. Navy Blue Angels Flight Demonstration Squadron in September 2014 and flew as Opposing Solo for the 2016 team.
About Lee Victory Park
There is no admission cost to visit the park or memorial. Free parking is available at 110 Sam Ridley Parkway East. Lee Victory Recreation Park hours are 6:00am - 11:00pm (subject to close due to inclement weather). Note the playground restrooms close at 8pm.