October 28, 2006 Carl Junction, Missouri - Fifty-three years ago, USAF Private Al Caldwell was working as an Airborne Radar Observer at Ladd Air Force Base in Fairbanks, Alaska. Whenever aircraft went down, his rescue unit would be called into action. Al was born on August 25, 1931, so in 1953, he was twenty-two-years-old and in his third year working for the USAF. He had signed up for a full twenty years and did not retire as a Master Sergeant E-6 until December 31, 1970. [ See Retirement Order below.] From 1959 to 1967, Al was in the first Astronaut Recovery Program to pull astronauts out of the Caribbean and other waters after Earth orbits or flights to the moon and back. After he retired from the USAF, Al worked in the computer industry selling and repairing computers and installing networks.
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