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Engine Room Exhibit brings USS Laffey to life

Molly Hamilton Feb 08, 2016
Visitors take the controls in the engine room just as the sailors once did

Visitors take the controls in the engine room just as the sailors once did

The engine room on the USS Laffey has been closed to tours since early December, but has now reopened as an exciting, new Engine Room Experience.  The new exhibit is fully interactive and immerses visitors into the sights and sounds of the engine room and gives them an understanding of what it was like to work in the engine room of this historic destroyer from 1944 to 1975.

The USS Laffey Engine Room Experience exhibit is part of the three-year plan of Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum to use technology to attract visitors with more exciting, innovative and interactive exhibits that involve the visitor in a hands-on experience while also teaching them about the history of the U.S. Navy and the heroes who served.

This new engine room experience is another piece of the ongoing mission to bring history alive at Patriots Point. “It’s one thing to look at an engine room, but it’s much more interesting to see it in action, hear the sounds and feel the rumbling under your feet,” said Executive Director Mac Burdette.  “In this new exhibit, visitors even get the chance to steer the ship understand the tension experienced by the sailors on the USS Laffey. We have brought the heart of the USS Laffey to life.”

The opening of the engine room is the first of two major exhibit openings planned on the USS Laffey for 2016.  Work continues on the interactive Combat Information Center (CIC) Experience that will highlight the ship’s service in the Cold War.  It is expected to open in a few months. Both will be included in the normal price of admission.

The USS Laffey DD-724 was first commissioned 72 years ago today on February 8, 1944. This Sumner-class destroyer served in World War II at the invasion of Normandy on D-Day and in the Pacific Theater – where she earned her nickname “The Ship That Would Not Die” after an attack by 22 Japanese bombers and kamikaze planes. The Laffey also served in the Korean and Vietnam Wars before being decommissioned in 1975 and joining the fleet at Patriots Point Naval & Maritime Museum in 1981.

For more information, check out this latest edition of YKTV (Yorktown TV):

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