The official presentation of an Italian Air force Agusta Bell 212 serial number MM81145 was held on Wednesday 1st June at the Malta Aviation Museum Foundation’s main hangar in Ta’Qali.
The event was presided by Italian ambassador his Excellency Fabrizio Romano, who reminded the guests present of the strong ties between Italy and Malta and this was the third aerial asset to be donated to the MAMF following that of Fiat G-91R and T6-G Texan which was testimony of the collaboration between the two Countries.
After welcoming the guests present, on behalf of the board of Directors of the museum, Ray Polidano Director General of the Foundation expressed his thanks for the support that the Italian Military Mission M.I.C.C.D has shown to the Foundation from its early days in 1994.
The iconic helicopter was then presented to the Foundation by Italian Navy Commander Alessandro Rinaldi, Head Italian Military Mission M.I.C.C.D who gave a touching speech reminding everyone that the aircraft was not just a simple mechanical object, but to the service personnel who operated it and the people it rescued, it was a friend.
In a museum it becomes a tool of a different nature, by means of which it reminds its past crews of old colleagues and the good and bad times they might have experienced together.
The presentation was followed by a social event that was well attended by Italian and Maltese personnel that operated the type from Malta.
The same aircraft served in Malta for a number of years when the Military Mission had two of the type deployed to Luqa to assist with Search and Rescue Missions before the arrival of the modern AW-139 in service with the AFM.