Thank you for giving me a moment to share this personal message about my departure from The Army Historical Foundation.
Every morning, I have the privilege of walking towards the entrance of the magnificent National Museum of the United States Army that we have built together. As I conclude my time as your President, I think of how that walk has changed so dramatically since I first joined this project eight years ago.
When I first arrived, we hadn’t yet broken ground. In fact, the site wasn’t even accessible by road. The plans were not final, we did not even have enough money to start the project, but we worked together to get this historic project underway. Soon, the land was cleared and transformed into a massive construction site. Those years were exciting, as we saw something that was long envisioned, finally being brought to life. The view of the Museum seemed to change every day and I am reminded just how important this journey has been.
With the walls raised and the roof in place, the Army immediately got to work creating a stunning series of galleries and filling them with nearly 1,400 treasures of our past. Tammy Call, who has been an exceptional teammate and leader of the Museum, worked with her team to turn the building we constructed into a worldclass destination.
During the months that COVID delayed opening and later partial building occupancy, I was continually reminded just how important this project would ultimately become. We had finally built our nation’s tribute to the American Soldier—I could not wait to share it with you. Together, we persevered through that challenging time and were overjoyed to open our doors to the public.
Today, I enter the Museum each day with World War II veterans, young Soldiers and their Families, and all the generations between. Inside, they see the story of their service told. I also greet grateful Americans, international visitors, and waves of school children. Their Museum experience teaches them about the Army that won our nation’s freedom and has protected us ever since. This morning as I walked in, I counted 8 parked buses. Inside, I met 2 of the tour operators. I told them how much we appreciated them stopping by and they both said “we really like it here and that’s why we keep coming back.”
In each of these moments, I think of the thousands of donors across our nation who believed in this project, understood its significance, and gave what they could to make it happen. To all of you, I am deeply grateful.
To our supporters, my teammates at the Museum, and my family at the Foundation, thank you for the incredible honor of being a part of this great campaign. As the Foundation’s mission continues, I can’t wait to see what the future holds.
LTG Roger Schultz, USA-Ret.