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Albin C. Hammond ( Missoula 1946 )

posted: Apr 29, 2015

Al died March 29, 2015, in Missoula Montana. Following graduation from Miles City High School, he worked as an ironworker for several years in his hometown. After the start of WWII he volunteered as an army paratrooper and became part of the 11th Airborne Division sent to the Pacific, first to New Guinea and then to the Philippines. In 1945 he became part of the occupying force in Japan.

Upon his return to the United States, Al attended the university in Missoula for two years. He was one of the many returning WWII veterans that hired on as smokejumpers in the summer of 1946.

Al had a great and memorable 31-year career with the USFS during which time he made 98 parachute jumps. Because of his background in first aid, he was assigned to many rescue jumps, most notable, the 1959 Yellowstone earthquake that took 28 lives.

In 1961 Al was placed in charge of the Region 1 helicopter program becoming a helicopter pilot himself.