South Carolina Airport to Be Dedicated to Tobul Family
The Bamberg County Airport will host a dedication ceremony from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 22, to complete the county’s naming of the airport field in memory of longtime Bamberg County businessman Joe Tobul and in honor of the Tobul family.
Joe served in the United States Marines and instilled his love of military aircraft in his son, Jim. After Jim attended college, the two set out to find a warbird to restore and fly. In 1981, they found a Corsair near Homestead, FL. Completely dismantled, the aircraft’s 10,000 lb. weight made for quite a project to relocate, much less restore, but Joe and Jim made the purchase, took the aircraft home to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and began an arduous10-year restoration. In 1991, the “Korean War Hero” flew again, and both Jim and Joe piloted the airplane at airshows all over the East Coast.
Jim now performs at 18 or more airshows per year, bringing tears to the eyes of veterans and awakening the curiosity of upcoming generations to learn more about the fight for freedom waged by those who came before. He also is proud to participate in the U.S. Navy Legacy Flight program, in which he flies alongside a modern Navy F-18 Super Hornet fighter in a poignant display of military heritage and tribute.
Bamberg County Airport opened in October of 1982. Aviation enthusiast Joseph “Joe” O. Tobul, CEO of Tobul Accumulators, constructed a hangar in agreement with the county airport commission. Tobul had chosen Bamberg for a plant location in 1987 due to the availability of an airport and the county’s professional proposal.
“Ultimately it’s his leadership and his influence through the many years in maintaining airport facilities that have contributed to the airport’s success,” Bamberg County Administrator Joey R. Preston said. “Joe and especially his son, Jim, also played a significant role in restoring and preserving several World War ll aircraft. To commemorate this service, the county thought it was to name the airfield after the family, with a formal dedication ceremony.”
“It’s exciting to see all the improvements and the growing interest in our county airport,” said Spencer Donaldson, Chairman of the Bamberg County Council, “of course, all of this would not be possible without the many decades of investment the Tobul family made into our airport and into our community, providing great employment opportunities for residents at Tobul Accumulators. It’s only fitting that we dedicate our airfield in their honor.”
The 94-acre airport has an asphalt paved runway of 3,603 feet x 60 feet. https://bambergair.com/flight-information
“We encourage the public to join us next month for this dedication ceremony, and to learn more about our airport operations. It’s going to be an exciting family fun and community-oriented day.” Preston said.