These same local influential aviation interests who foresaw the need of the airport but a scant few months prior, now utilized their aircraft in the defense of their country. Their experiments quickly became the basis for a very viable shore defense system for the entire East coast and Gulf of Mexico. Courier duties, air patrol, shore patrol and target towing for the Signal Corp. were just a few of the activities carried out from Lantana.

 

 

1950s

The Civil Air Patrol is still active a the airport which houses the Group 5 Headquarters. This is an excellent youth program for Palm Beach and Lantana, in addition to a Search Unit for the U.S. Customs Department.

 

The War Department leased the entire airport for the duration of WW II as a naval auxiliary training field, building a shack house and temporary facilities in addition to basing several observation planes. After V E Day, the airport took on civil operations with the start up of flight school activities catering to Veterans Administration flight training. Morrison Field remained closed to civilian traffic until 1960, except for a two-year period when it was opened to all civil operations.

 

Between 1945 and 1960, when Lantana was supplying practically all of the general aviation activities for East Palm Beach County, yearly operations peaked to 115,000. All of the large aircraft iron of the prestigious companies of this country spent some time each year in Lantana. Ex military aircraft included converted B-17s, B-24s, B-25s, b-26s and B-47s. One evening over 20 DC-3s were counted on the airport along with 36 Beechcraft Model 18 aircraft.

 

 

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