The air control tower serves as a reminder of Reese Air Force Base, which closed in 1997 because of federal cutbacks. Reese, located west of the city, opened in 1942 as Lubbock Army Air Corps Advanced Flying School, then became Lubbock Army Airfield.
In 1949, it was named Reese AFB to honor Augustus F. Reese Jr. of Shallowater, who was killed during World War II on a bombing mission. The base served as a training ground for military pilots, who learned to land on wind-swept aircraft carrier decks after battling the West Texas winds. Among the most famous graduates of the base was Iranian Crown Prince Reza Pahlavi.
After its closure as a military base, the facility found new life as the Reese Techonology Center, which contines to thrive today.