As with many people returning from
Vietnam, I spent a period of adjustment to the “world”.
I had been stationed in
prior to assignment to
and our household goods were in storage there so it seemed reasonable to return
to take up residence. I got a job with the USAR as a full time civilian GS9. I
was assigned as the S1 of a USAR Special Forces unit in
Honolulu. I was not happy with the job, as they wanted me to go either to
to jump school. After a year in “
” I was not willing to do that. I quit after a month. I really wanted to get
into Law Enforcement but the Honolulu PD had a 3 year residence requirement.
They would count the year I was there in the army and the year in VN but I still
had about 7 months to go and then no guarantee of employment. We had just about
settled on buying a house but with no job and indefinite plans, we decided to
return to the mainland.
I returned to my hometown in RI in Nov
1970 and got on with a medium size Police Department. I stayed there about 10
years and rose to Chief of Detectives and attended the
In 1979. I had an itch that needed to be scratched however. I loved flying in
the back of the LOH 6 and the Huey.
I wanted to be a helicopter pilot. I
made a deal with my wife that I would get another degree but in Law Enforcement
this time and then I would use the GI bill to get my helicopter license. So I
got a second BS in Law Enforcement in 1977 and my helicopter license in 1978.
There was a lot of political interference
with the PD and I got restless again and started looking for a job where I could
use my helicopter license and my law
enforcement both. We moved to
Texas, my wife’s hometown, in 1981. I got on with Sheriff’s Office as they had a
helicopter, but had to start all over in my law enforcement career. I was not
able to fly until much later. Over the years I rose through the ranks again and
in 1986 became the Jail Administrator of the Minimum Security facility housing
200 inmates and about 50 staff.
Sheriff’s Office obtained 3 OH 58 helicopters and refurbished them for Law
Enforcement. I became a line pilot and finally in 2003 the Chief Pilot.
I logged over 4000 hours in
flight time and finally retired in 2012 with 41 years of
Note: Stu attended the 1st "Historic Reunion" of the 2/9th in 2013 at
Ft. Sill, OK.
Sadly, Stu passed away on August 25, 2015
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