A. Smith 1945
A. Smith was born in Chicago on March 25, 1925 and moved
to Pontiac at an early age. He attended public schools
there, graduating from high school in 1943.
received basic training at Shepherd AFB, Texas during
June and July 1943. Upon completion he entered the Cadet
program at the University of Missouri. Further training
followed during 1944 at gunnery school - Laredo, Texas
and Air Corps Navigational School, San Marcos, Texas.
In August 1944, he was commissioned as Second Lieutenant.
After graduation from Airborne Radar Operator course at
Boca Raton, Florida, he served briefly with the 16th Bombardment
Group at Fairmount, Nebraska. He joined 39th Bomb Group
at Salina, Kansas.
July 24th daylight raid on the Nakajima Aircraft Plant
at Handa, Smith recalls that there was a solid undercast,
so this necessitated a radar run-direct synchronous. Post-strike
revealed that 95% of the formation's bombs that had been
toggled on Crew 44, the lead plane, had landed on the
target. The aiming point was demolished.
Volkmar also recalls the important role that by Smith,
in removing "Matt" Matthaus from the tail compartment
when he was mortally wounded over Tokyo on the May 26th
completed his wartime service with the rank of First Lieutenant.
At that time he decided to make the Air Force a career
with the ultimate goal of becoming a pilot.
his 30 years in the military, "Chuck" attended many schools.
In September 1945, he returned from the Pacific, and was
assigned at Boca Raton, Florida to supervise a radar-training
course. During 1946, he trained recruits at Lackland Army
Air Base, Texas, while awaiting entry into the pilot training
July 1948, Smith received his pilot's rating upon completion
of training at Rudolph Field, Texas, and Barksdale Field,
Louisiana. He then reported to Langley Field, Virginia
as a pilot in the 363rd Tactical Reconnaissance Group,
Tactical Air Command.
April 9, 1949, Charles Smith was married to Shirley Elizabeth
Brown. They have one daughter Amy Kilmon, who was born
was sent to the University of Michigan in June 1949 where
he was a student in physics under the Air Force Institute
of Technology (ATIT) civilian institution program. Following
the outbreak of the Korean War, he was transferred in
August 1950, to the resident school of AFIT at Wright-Patterson
AFB, Ohio, for a special electronics course. In August
1951, he received his diploma in electrical engineering.
next assignment was the Air Proving Ground Command at
Eglin AFB, Florida, where he served initially as a test
pilot in the Light Bombardment Test Squadron. This was
followed by duties as a project officer and Chief of the
Radar Branch of the Operational Suitability Test Divison.
July 1953, "Chuck" was assigned as Communications and
Electronics Officer of the 931st Aircraft Control and
Warning Squadron of the Northeast Air Command near Thule,
was sent to Rome Air Development Center, Griffith AFB,
New York, in July 1954 where he served for nearly four
years. Starting as a project engineer in the Intelligence
Laboratory, he advanced to Chief of the Radar Processing
Section of the laboratory.
returned to the University of Michigan, in June 1958 as
an AFIT-sponsored graduate student. He received his degree
of Master of Science in Electrical Engineering in January
then moved over to Wright-Patterson AFB for duty with the
Air Technical Intelligence Center, an Air Force Headquarters
unit that was later re-designated as the Foreign Technology
Division (FTD) of Air Force Systems Command. His assignment
included positions as an analyst in the Radar Branch and
the Guidance and Control Branch of the Electronics Division,
Chief of the Communications and Space Electronics Division,
and Chief of the Space Technology Directorate. In the years
1960-1962, while stationed at Wright-Patterson, Smith attended
the Ohio State University Graduate School on a part-time