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Fort Liberty, North Carolina: Barney the Bear Team Field Report

JFK Special Warfare Museum

1400 Marion St., Fort Liberty, NC
JFK Special Warfare Museum. NOTE: Photo ID required to access Fort Liberty. I-95 exit 46 (Elizabethtown/Fayetteville) toward Fayetteville. Continue to exit 100 (Mountain Rd.) Turn left onto Mountain Rd. and continue to Eastern Blvd/Business 301. The Cumberland County Convention Center will be on the right. Turn right and immediately get into the left lane. Turn left at the first stop light onto Owen Drive, which will become the All-American Expressway. Drive to the sixth exit (Gruber Rd.) Turn left. Continue to Reilly St. Turn right. At the next light (Ardennes St.), turn left and then turn left again at Marion St. Park at the rear of the museum.
T-Su 10 am - 4 pm (Call to verify) Local health policies may affect hours and access.
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Barney the Bear.

Barney the Bear

Barney, on display at the JFK Special Warfare Museum, survived Vietnam -- but couldn't endure North Carolina. Report...

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Barney the Bear

I FINALLY got to see Barney the Bear after being earlier thwarted by museum "inventory" and "clean up". Barney still resides in the JFK Special Forces Museum; sadly Jasper the sentinel monkey does not, but more on that later.

Even without Barney the Bear or Jasper the sentinel monkey the museum is worth a visit. There are dioramas special forces related tid-bits from all the major American wars -- and some of the lesser known and remembered conflicts. They had tributes to US Prisoners of War -- including one diorama which showcased all the personal belongings on one US POW and the amount of living space this particular POW actually had -- which was next to nothing.

Barney was standing upright in a small plexiglas case (his left nostril touches the plexiglas). I was expecting to find a more "hairless" Barney but he had most of his fur. Whoever stuffed him did leave a nasty cut from his throat to his, er, unmentionables. Other than the bad first incision and resulting closure, the stuffing job was pretty good.

Jasper the sentinel monkey was nowhere to be found in the museum. As I was getting ready to leave the museum I looked above some of the displays and noticed that there were old black ink drawings of what some of the exhibits looked like in times gone by. It was easy to match up some of the existing displays to their older drawings based on the contents of both the drawing and exhibit. There was one drawing showing what I must assume is Barney playing cards with Jasper the sentinel monkey!

[Greg Brown, 01/27/2001]

Nearby Offbeat Places

Eiffel TowerEiffel Tower, Fayetteville, NC - 8 mi.
U.S. Arsenal Ghost TowerU.S. Arsenal Ghost Tower, Fayetteville, NC - 8 mi.
Special Forces K9 Dog MemorialSpecial Forces K9 Dog Memorial, Fayetteville, NC - 8 mi.
In the region:
Big Chair, Pittsboro, NC - 42 mi.

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