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Al Goes To Keesler To Relearn Hurricane Hunting

Al, 87, is a current resident at the Chancellor Place of Murrieta in California with a variety of skills and trades acquired through his lifelong dedication to learning new things and experiencing new places. After Al finished Officer Candidate School with the United States Air Force in 1946, he began training in Climatology and Meteorology, which would soon become his life passion. Al has spent most of his life enhancing his knowledge in Climatology and Meteorology but has been unable to see the new technology advancements since 1965 brought on as a result of the global population increase. Al’s Wish of a Lifetime was to be able to learn the new techniques and procedures that are used to track Hurricanes with the 53rd Reconnaissance Squadron at the Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi, Mississippi.

Al completed Weather Observing and Forecasting School at Chanute Air Force Base in 1947 which retained him as an instructor in Climatology and Synoptic Meteorology post-graduation while he received his Bachelor’s Degree in Geography and Climatology by attending night school. After he completed this portion of his schooling, he spent two years in Guam, Mariana Islands with the 54th Weather Reconnaissance Squadron in 1954. During his two year tour in Guam, he completed over 2000 hours as an Aerial Observer and made 26 Penetrations into Typhoon Eyes. In January of 1957 Al was transferred to Ent Air Force Base in Colorado where he served as the Director of Climatology for the 4th Weather Wing and the Air Force Academy Construction Agency. In September of 1958, the Air Force then transferred Al to The University of Michigan where he received a Master’s Degree in Meteorology. In January of 1961 Al was sent to FUCHU Air Force Base in Japan where he served as the First Weather Wing Climatologist and Scientific Services Officer. He was also a member of the Tokyo Weather Central Typhoon Forecasting and Warning Board. Al retired from the United States Air Force in 1965, but continued to gain knowledge in Weather, Politics, and Transportation.

At 87, Al still strives to learn as much as he can. He has completed 1,764 lecture hours from The Great Courses program – spending three to four hours a day enhancing his knowledge. Al enjoys gaining more knowledge in subjects such as History and Religion. This is due to the fact that he was only able to take courses relevant to his studies in Weather and Engineering during his previous studies. He spent 11 years as a Project Director at McDonnell Douglas in the Zero-G Cloud Physics Lab, 10 years teaching at the University of Irvine in California, and 20 years in planning and construction consulting for transportation in Orange County, California.

Al has also enjoyed being involved with his community. He had the pleasure of serving as Mayor of Fountain Valley, California beginning in 1970. Following his tenure, he decided to volunteer as a City Councilman until 1982. He currently is the Chairperson for the Resident Council at the Chancellor Place of Murrieta-welcoming new residents to the residency. Wish of a Lifetime and Brookdale made Al’s wish a reality by sending him and his daughter Amy to Keesler AFB on September 11, 2013 where he had the opportunity to meet the 53rd Reconnaissance Squadron and learn the new techniques and procedures that these men and women need to utilize in order to predict a Hurricane. Al was overjoyed to be brought up to speed on all of the technological advancements that have been made, and was very grateful that he could spend so much time learning from the modern Hurricane Hunters.

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