601 Broad Street, Rome, GA 30161
Admiral Towers Memorial Plaza is dedicated to the memory of Admiral John Henry Towers, native Roman and “the Father of Naval Aviation.” Located adjacent to Rome City Hall and Auditorium, the life-size bronze statue and surroundings tells his amazing story.
“Jack” Towers was born in 1885 and reared in the Towers family home in Downtown Rome. He attended Rome Public Schools and was graduated by the U.S. Naval Academy with the Class of 1906. In 1911 he became the third naval officer to be designated a “Naval Aviator.” He spent much of his career winning acceptance for aviation from a Navy dominated by “Battleship” admirals who failed to recognized a future for naval aviation—often to the detriment of his career.
During a career that lasted 41 years (1906-1947), Towers commanded the first transatlantic flight in NC Flying Boats (1919), established the Naval Air Training Station in Pensacola, held the position of chief of the Bureau of Aeronautics, was the first Naval Aviator to attain Flag Rank (Admiral), and the first native Georgian to attain 4-star rank. Towers is a member of the National Aviation Hall of Fame, International Aviation Hall of Fame, U.S. Naval Aviation Hall of Fame, the Georgia Aviation Hall of Fame, and the Aircraft Carrier Hall of Fame.