The former Air Force Base on Santa Rosa Island

SANTA ROSA ISLAND—Santa Rosa Island, the second largest of the eight Channel Islands, housed an Air Force base in the 1950s and early ‘60s. According to NPS, as a consequence of the Cold War, in 1950 the Air Force leased 336 acres on the south side of the island to house the 669th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron. They constructed an advanced technical outpost and established a residential, maintenance and administrative area for more than 200 personnel, along with a pier at Johnson’s Lee. The Air Force base closed in 1963 when advancing technology made it redundant. The facility was largely torn down in the 1990s, according to

National Park Service photo

One thought on “The former Air Force Base on Santa Rosa Island

  • September 5, 2023 at 10:31 pm

    I used to sit on the banks of the Gulf at Navarre and watch rockets taking off on the eastern side of Santa Rosa Island. There was a bridge not too far from our home that was guarded and I, as a child, made friends with the guards who let me and my dog Mopper cross over to the pristine beaches. I remember those excursions with fondness and still have a large conch shell I found there.



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