SUX in Sioux City honors Brigadier General Bud Day, a decorated war hero whose legacy does not suck

Every airport has a three letter code that it is known by. Des Moines is DSM. Cedar Rapids is CID. Chicago O'Hare is ORD. Washington D.C. is DCA.


What about the Sioux Gateway Airport in Sioux City? Well, their three letter code is simply: SUX.


Yes, I'm sure you might be smirking and maybe even snickering a bit.


As a result, a lot of things in Sioux City apparently SUX. It's both funny and also an opportunity to be different. Sioux City seems to have embraced it pretty well. Some local meteorologists are happy to play up the fact that sometimes the weather does SUX. I see someone had the idea to make out some COVID 19 SUX face masks to wear.


The airport itself, while pretty small, does honor the life of a hometown hero who definitely left a legacy that does not suck. That native son is Brigadier General George E. "Bud" Day. The airfield itself now bears his name and there is a beautiful bronze statue near the airport entrance and a display inside that showcases his incredible life story.

Many Iowans and definitely those of a certain age are probably familiar with Bud Day. Before he passed away in July of 2013 at the age of 88, Brigadier General Day was considered to be the country's most decorated living service member. As is noted in information online (of which there is plenty to read about), Day was an Air Force officer, aviator, and veteran of World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War. He was also a prisoner of war (with U.S. Senator John McCain) in Vietnam and recipient of the Medal of Honor and Air Force Cross. As of 2016, he is the only person to be awarded both the Medal of Honor and Air Force Cross. He was posthumously advanced to the rank of Brigadier General effective March 27, 2018.


The 9 foot tall bronze statue out front of the terminal shows Day in his aviator uniform.

Each side of the granite base includes details about his life and service.

Inside the terminal, the glass showcase exhibit includes a lot of information in addition to his uniform and his medals.

If you find yourself flying out of or into SUX, take a few minutes to enjoy the various installations honoring this famous Iowan's life.

Or, just stop on by the airport if you are in the area (it's not far off of I-29 on the south side of Sioux City), and take a gander. It's a nice way to kill a few minutes and learn more about the history of a man who many people did (and still do) look up to.


As always, I welcome your suggestions of places to visit and profile whether in Woodbury County or any of the other 98 counties in Iowa. If you have a good idea or would like to host the Iowa Adventurer, please drop me a note through this site.

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