By: John T. Wells Jr.
The considerable value of aviation to Yuma is measured in dollars and convenience, as well as security for our country. General aviation is an important component of the flying community in Yuma.
General aviation is usually described as all aviation other than military and airlines. General aviation includes all varieties of aircraft ranging from piston-prop to prop-jet to pure turbine-jet.
The facilities at Yuma which service GA support local business activity which provides employment to many persons whose income is spent in Yuma. Yuma is indeed fortunate to have the use of a fine airfield and to be able to benefit from the boost to its economy, which is derived from GA, airlines and military.
Yuma is unique in that it lacks the myriad of airports which many other growing cities possess. However, thanks to a joint-use agreement which partners civil and military use, it is possible for taxpaying aviators of all types to fly in and out of Yuma. If Yuma were limited to only military aircraft, civil aviation could not find any other functional airports with services in practical distance of Yuma.
As a personal example, I fly into Yuma frequently to visit family and get maintenance at Yuma. I buy fuel and oil there. I get routine and annual inspections and maintenance there. If you would like to quantify things, count the GA aircraft parked on the ramp sometimes and look at the hangars containing aircraft. Be happy that Yuma still has the one active airport.
A lot of communities have lost their military airfield in economy moves.
JOHN T. WELLS JR.
Lt. Colonel (Retired)
Source: Yuma Sun