After WWII, Richard Kirkland was assigned to test atomic bombs on the Marshall Islands. For our project, he discusses his fruitless search for a lost atomic bomb. Following this assignment, Kirkland spent the Korean War in the Air Force Rescue Service. He enjoyed this work immensely, and discusses it here in some detail.
Richard Kirkland's work with helicopters carried past his time in the Air Force Rescue Service and into his career working for Howard Hughes' Aircraft division, where he helped to develop and distribute helicopters to every police station in America.
Richard Kirkland moved to Vienna, VA, to raise a family with his wife, Maria. He resides here to this day. An artist since childhood, Kirkland spent his free time in the Army Air Corps drawing a serial comic for his fighter squadron. Still an artist, the walls of his home are lined with his and his wife's paintings.
Read more at Richard Kirkland's website, here.
Joining the Army Air Corps
The Japanese Fishing Boat "Mission"
Meeting Charles Lindbergh
Working in the Jungles of New Guinea
Landing Predicament at Leyte Gulf
Remembering Richard Ira "Dick" Bong
How WWII Fighter Pilots Spent Their Days Off
Working for the Air Force Rescue Service
Meeting General Eisenhower
Searching for the Lost Atomic Bomb
Working with Helicopters (3-part video)
Rescue Work while Stationed at a M.A.S.H. Unit
High Rent at Watergate
Meeting his Wife, Moving to Vienna
Living Next Door to Joe Theismann, Helicopter Rides for the Neighbors
Raising a Family in Vienna, "Peace, Love, & Ice Cream"
All interviews by Sophie Abramowitz and David Shelby