USAF ROTORHEAD Members
Joined USAF Oct 1972 completed boot camp at Lackland AFB, TX., then completed helo. mech school at Sheppard AFB, TX.
After tech school I reported to Det. 15, 39TH ARRW at Patrick AFB, FL. where I worked on HH-53s. This was a new experience working for a TSgt. Robert Meadford. We had some real interesting TDY’s.
My next assignment took me to Elmendorf AFB, AK. where I worked on CH/HH-3E’s under the guidance of TSgt. Boyd l. Bucholz. I do recall the incident of the great arctic flash involving Jr.
Well after a couple years of the cold I was moved to a slightly warmer area. Yea, Tucson, AZ is a little warmer. Here I was assigned to the 11th Tactical Drone Sqdn. and was going to fly as a MARS Flight Mech. My supervisor now was an all American named SSgt. Igor Ivanoff, just a wonderful person. I actually think that MARS, i.e. Mid Air Retrieval is the craziest thing I have ever done.
Well after a couple years of Davis Monthan I headed off to rescue school and on to Osan AFB, Korea with Det. 13, 33rd ARRS. Here I worked as an HH-3E FE with my boss being TSgt. Dick Vanderplough. Another good man even though he talked about UH-1’S a lot. This was a busy but fun job, alert, site support, VIP runs etc.
After this year I returned to the 1551st FTS at Kirtland AFB as an instructor FE and SEFE. Oh, by now I’ve made SSgt. a couple of times and Tech once, don’t ask how many times I did this. I worked for MSgt. Jim Bourcier, another great man. Hey I am still hanging on to these old HH-3E’s, like I like them.
After working with students and flying the H-3’s in the heat and high altitude I was ready for sea level again so off we go to Kadena AB, Okinawa with the 38TH ARRS working for stan. eval. and MSgt. Bill Scravani. This was another good assignment with all sorts of variety. This is a rough time in my life marital problems, too much beer, a DUI and the worst attitude ever. No one’s fault but mine. So I moved from FE to job control working with Ruth Emanuel, SSgt., another wonderful person. Hey, I made SSgt. again and didn’t even try. Well a few months later, after social actions, I was put back in the jump seat re-qualified to SEFE.
Got my orders for Shaw AFB with the 703rd TASS/507th Wing, still on the old faithful H-3’s. This was another good job working with a bunch of good folks. See I tested for Tech again but could not wait to put it on before I got another DUI, I was offered some options but decided to get out go home and maybe sober up.
I did sober up but it took a long time and all is well. New wife, 3 girls, 1 son and 7 grandchildren; my son is on his fourth tour in this current war and I am so proud of him. I hope the military has improved the treatment of drug and alcohol problems. I have no problems with the fine people I worked for and with. Good to be here sober. Will help anyone I can. Yogi out.