Project 863  

Budd Rice

Budd Rice
Hi Res - VHi Res - Patch

1968 -69
Team 1

Budd Rice, Jerry Wirz, Mert Canady, John Fader, Bob Kubo/Dick Maddux
John Dunn was originally schedule to be on Team 1. While at Offutt, before going to Shemya, John was found to have a severe lung problem and was ordered not to fly. Dick Maddux and Bob Kubo split the tour (45 days each) to fill in for John.

Team 2
Dick Maddux, Jim McConnell, Bob Seymore, Logan Delp, Bob Kubo

FTD Support at Wright Patterson
Hughes provided Data Reduction and Analysis support to FTD. Capt. Gary Barnes was officer in charge of Rivet Amber Data Analysis at FTD. Hughes rotated the Shemya Software Support and Data Analysis support personnel on a rotation basis (every three months) Mert Canady from Team 1 and Jim McConnell from Team 2. Capt. When Gary Barnes completed his AF tour of duty he joined Hughes Aircraft at the Fullerton, CA facility and was responsible for many black programs.

Systems Engineer
The Systems Engineer at Hughes that provided support for the RA program was Fred Goodrich. Fred visited Shemya at least once.

Lisa Ann Raven
LTC Ron Strong (Retired) has an excellent write up describing the RA radar so I will refer you to his submittal (Click Here). Ron did have some doubt about the frequency of the transmitter. Duncan Wilmore provided the answer. As Duncan Wilmore stated to Ron it was an S band radar in the 3 GHz range. Instead of describing the radar this write up will consist of anecdotal accounts of the experiences by the personnel associated with the program.

Stethoscopes – Budd Rice
The Radar was installed at a testing facility for checkout and testing located on a hill over looking Carbon Canyon East of Los Angles in Orange County. To get to the site one had to drive through an orange orchard. Prior to "firing up" the Radar the transmitter engineers donned stethoscopes to listen for arcs in the waveguide or antenna. As soon as power was applied to the transmitter there was a racket that put the anvil course to shame. No one needed a stethoscope. The arcing could be heard outside the building at the guard shack. The officer on duty called in to find out what was causing the racket.

Baby Ball – Tom Simundich
As a corresponding member to the Rivet Ball / Rivet Amber Fraternal Union I thought it my duty to make known that there was a third Ball aircraft that flew from Shemya (once). The other two, of course, being Rivet Ball and Cobra Ball. Some time after the crash of Rivet Ball and before Rivet Amber moved from Hangar 3 to Hangar 2 a small white commercial jet, low on fuel, landed at Shemya. The type of jet that my uneducated eye classifies as a Lear Jet. Coming from where, going to where, I never knew. The jet was housed overnight in Hangar 2. I witnessed and will attest that I saw the jet taxi from the runway into Hangar 2. The next   day the jet took off for parts unknown. I did not witness yet I will attest to the "facts" of the following. While the jet was in Hangar 2 some one or group of individuals (Civilians? Nah, too lazy. Officers? Pulleeze! Enlisted men? More than likely.) had painted on the white fuselage "Baby Ball". How long the jet flew as Baby Ball is another lost story.

Poker Table - John Fader
When we arrived on Shemya for our tour, we were forced to play poker on a very wobbly, 4-leg card table. It was terrible. One of the regulars from the Crows called his wife and asked her to buy us a good poker table. She called back and said it would cost $ 90 and he told her to go ahead and buy it and we'd pay for it. It arrived on the next tanker flight. That night we decided to drag $ 0.10 out of every pot to pay for it until we had the $ 90. We had it by breakfast.

Good Tippers – Budd Rice
The Hughes RA support personnel threw a party for the Ravens assigned to LTV for training. Several of us lived in the Colonial Apartments in Greenville which were located across the street from a City Park. The park had BBQs. The Ravens and their families were invited for a steak cookout. In the invitation we encouraged the quests to bring their children and we hired a baby sitter to be available to care for the children and assigned Ken Pugh's apartment for her and the children. As AF personnel picked up their children they tipped the baby sitter. After all had left and Ken paid the baby sitter, she said that the AF personnel had tipped her. Even though the party had lasted longer than we had told her it would, she left with a very big smile on her face and stated that ANYTIME we needed a baby sitter she would be available.

A Senior Moment - Budd Rice
In viewing King's video, "A Place Called Shemya" I thought it was pretty cool how the officers in the video were feeding the Blue Foxes. I thought, "I would have liked to have done that." Then Mert Canady, a member of the Hughes Team, sent me some stills of our time on Shemya. I have no recollection of the picture being taken or of me ever feeding the fox. Usually a picture will bring back the memory. This one hasn't.

Budd Rice
Hi Res

Kingdon R. Hawes (Webmaster)
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