Fred S. Browne, Jr.


I left the farm at age 18 in search of adventure and so that I would not have to work on weekends and holidays. My adventure started at Lackland AFB with Basic Training and continued at Scott with radio repairman school. The adventure continued with assignments at Stewart AFB, Hopedale, Labrador, Keesler AFB, Mather AFB and a marriage to Ruth including the birth of our first child. Next, there was Officer Candidate School (OCS), a short tour in pilot training and a lengthy tour in Navigator training. Of course, a winter vacation at Stead AFB paved the way for more adventure (I gave up on having weekends and holidays off).

During the next six years I flew about 7,000 hours at McCoy (EC 121), Thule (C54), and Southeast Asia (EC 121) and earned my Bachelor of Science (BS) degree. Then I was off to Mather as a Navigator instructor (T29 & T737). My final assignment was Pope AFB in C130s. While in Florida and California, we adopted three more children. I retired in 1976 and went to work for a camera repair company. I bought the shop and the adventure continued. Running my own business was as rewarding as it was frustrating. I sold my business in 2000 and now, I finally get weekends and holidays off.