Old-school metal

The top 30 feet of an approximately 130 foot-tall oil drilling rig used around Alaska by the drilling company Brinkerhoff-Signal in the 1960s and 1970s sits near the Kenai Aviation hangar on the Kenai Municipal Airport on Sept. 12 in Kenai. Kenai Aviation founder Bob Bielefeld, who came to Alaska as an oil driller before getting into commercial flight, bought the piece of historic equipment as a memento, planning to erect it near Kenai Aviation’s office, said Jim Bielefeld, Kenai Aviation’s current owner and Bob Bielefeld’s son. The plans never materialized, and with Kenai Aviation closing after 56 years of business, Jim Bielefeld said he’s approached the Kenai Historical Society about preserving the derrick alongside other artifacts of the town’s history —†including two fishing boats and the steam winch that once pulled them onto docks in the Kenai River Mouth —†in the lawn of the Kenai Visitors Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center. The cost of the concrete pad required to stabilize the derrick in the case of the earthquake has so far been prohibitive, said Kenai Historical Society member Joe Harris. (Ben Boettger/Peninsula Clarion)

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