Monday, January 28, 2013

Lost Airfields of Lake County - Cook Cleland Airport

Cook Cleland was born in 1916 in Cleveland, Ohio.  As a boy, Cook was fascinated by the  National Air Races (1920-1949), which were held eight times in Cleveland from 1929-1939.  Cook Cleland was a highly decorated Naval Aviator in WWII and Korea.  This love of flying and keen memories of air races came into play in his post war years.  Cleland was the Thompson Trophy Air Race winner in 1947 and 1949.  Thompson, predecessor to TRW sponsored the 10 mile long - 50' altitude race until 1952.  On hiatus until 1962, it reemerged as the Cleveland National Air Show in 1964.  Cleland returned from WWII to open his own commercial airport and flight school.

Cook Cleland Airport, aka Willoughby Airport and later Euclid Avenue Airport was established circa 1929-1933.  Located at Euclid Avenue and E. 355th Street , it sat on a 100 acre property with three runways.  Numerous aviation projects and restorations marked his tenure there.  Cleland even hosted the 1950 Air Show at his site.  The Korean War saw Cleland return to active military service.  His airport closed in 1952 after his lease expired.  1954 marked its last footnote in aviation annals.  The Bidler Road section of the airport eventually became a small industry corridor.  However as late as recent years still finds the hanger of sixty years ago intact.

information gleaned from

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