The Richmond Naval Air Station, located in Richmond Heights, FL. was so named after the Richmond family, one of Miami's pioneers. Its construction was authorized two weeks after the Pearl Harbor attack of December 7th, 1941. Construction began immediately. The purpose of the base was to guard the Florida Straits against enemy attack by Nazi U-boats. Because of the importance of the Straits and the Caribbean, it was the largest base in the Navy blimp inventory, except for Lakehurst. Altogether 150 Goodyear blimps were commissioned to defend the Atlantic Seaboard, the Caribbean, and the West Coast.
In 1945 a massive fire destroyed the Blimp Hangers, the base for the most part lay in ruins until the late 50's when the Castro revolution gave the base a military purpose. In 1960 the US Intelligence agencies moved in to help train anti-Castro Freedom Fighters. The headquarters building became known as JM-Wave (a secret installation). Thanks to the efforts of the Friends of the South Florida Military Museum this historic landmark was saved for future generations to learn about our rich military history in South Florida.
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