What did I say about L.A. and benefactors?

The California Science Center has received what officials describe as an “extraordinary” financial contribution to the new Air and Space Center that will house the space shuttle Endeavour.


The gift, to be announced at a news conference Thursday, comes from a foundation chaired by Lynda Oschin, wife of the late Los Angeles businessman and philanthropist Samuel Oschin, whose name already graces the Griffith Observatory planetarium and the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center cancer institute stemming from charitable contributions there.


At Oschin’s request, officials would not disclose the amount of the gift from the Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Oschin Family Foundation. But they called it “transformational” for the free state-run museum in South Los Angeles, adjacent to USC.


Officials say the Science Center has now raised, combined with other donations, nearly half of the $200 million it needs to transport Endeavour from Florida, build a temporary hangar, and design and construct a permanent museum wing that will house the spacecraft when it arrives this fall.


The new wing of the museum will be called the Samuel Oschin Air and Space Center and is expected to open in 2017. The interim hangar, being built now, will be called the Samuel Oschin Space Shuttle Endeavour Pavilion and will display the vehicle horizontally. Once it moves to the permanent wing the shuttle will be positioned vertically, as if prepared for launch, for generations of museum visitors to see.


Museum officials were thrilled at the donation.

I should say so.