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October 18, 2008

Ace’s new aircraft arrives

Ace, the ULM Warhawk, has a new ride: the Acemobile, based on a concept design by Disney Imagineers in Orlando, Fla.

Modelwerks, a major supplier for Theme Parks, engineered and constructed the motorized Acemobile, which is 11 feet long and 9 feet wide. Daniel Parke, president and owner of Modelwerks, transported the Acemobile from Orlando early Saturday morning.

Construction alum Jack Blitch (‘71), vice president for Attractions Development at Walt Disney Imagineering, played a major role in its creation. ULM President James Cofer shared a copy of "ACE's Adventures at the University of Louisiana at Monroe. ACE Explores Campus" with Blitch, and an idea was born.

Blitch said, “When President Cofer shared the activity book and requested help to create a vehicle for Ace, it didn't take me long to get excited about the prospect of giving back to my University in such a significant and high profile way. My colleagues and I at Walt Disney Imagineering immediately began thinking of how to give Ace his very own P-40. The concept design was delivered to President Cofer this past summer and now Ace is flying around campus!”

ULM’s Warhawk mascot is tied to the P-40 Warhawk airplane, flown by northeast Louisiana's General Claire Chennault and the Flying Tigers during WWII. The new Acemobile bears a striking resemblance to the P-40.

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