Charles R. Pinkham

Charles R. Pinkham

Army Air Corps


Feb 18, 1917 -
BIRTHPLACE: Abilene, Kansas


Army Air Corps
18th Weather Squadron
SERVED: Jul 21, 1942 -
Dec 3, 1945
HONORED BY: Eisenhower Foundation


Charlie' Pinkham was born in Abilene, KS and went to Abilene High School. Following high school, he worked in Redwood City, CA in several Drug Stores. He went to Kansas University for about 6 months and then went to Kansas City to get two licenses to qualify for working in radio as an engineer. He then took a position at a radio station in Hutchinson, KS as an engineer and then in Salina, KS doing the same type of work. He was drafted on 21 July 1942 and sent for Basic Training at an Army Air Force Base in Wichita Falls, TX. There he was trained in radio and meteorology. He was then sent to a pilot training base in Walnut Ridge, AR followed by an assignment to Seymour Johnson Base in Goldsboro, NC. He was sent to New York where he took a troop carrier ship to England. While in England, he was stationed at HQ 8th Air Force Base working on B-17 aircraft. He said several generals came there including General Doolittle. His work included gathering weather information and putting it on maps for pilot mission briefings. Of personal interest, Charlie said that all of the military were issued bicycles to use to and from work and to visit the local countryside. After his tour in England, he was sent back on the cruise ship 'Queen Mary' that had been converted to be a troop carrier during the war. He was discharged from the military at Camp Chaffee, AR. He took a job in Wichita, KS for several years at Boeing and then at Beech Aircraft Company as a technical writer. He then worked at Martin Marietta in Denver which, at that time, was building ICBM Missile Sites around the US. Charlie had an opportunity at that time to travel around the US servicing those sites. Charlie then went to the University of Oklahoma where he received his degree. He worked there and retired after 20 years. While there, he worked on special projects plotting the location of oil fields in the US and Mexico. While doing that, he developed an interest in ancient Aztec and Mayan cultures. Following his retirement, he continued to travel in South America pursuing those interests through the 1980s. He then moved back to the Salina and Abilene area where he resides at this time.