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Roland H. "Andy" Andersen ( Grangeville 1952 )

posted: Feb 19, 2018

Andy died December 12, 2017, in East Wenatchee, Washington. He left Chicago at age 17 to join a blister rust crew in Idaho followed by a year in the Army. Andy joined the smokejumpers in 1952, jumped at Grangeville that season and at Missoula 1953-60. He received his pilot’s license in 1953 and was a foreman for the Silver City crew during some of his time with the smokejumpers.

From 1958 to 1963 he worked for Civil Air Transport and Air America dropping supplies to guerrillas in Tibet and Hmong forces in Laos. In 1963 Air America hired him as a pilot.

During the years 1964-68 Andy worked at a variety of jobs, tried homesteading in Alaska, then returned to Thailand and started a charter boat service. In 1968-69 he worked as an Army contractor in Vietnam. Andy returned to the U.S. in 1970 and flew for Inter-Mountain Aviation and the USFS. He retired in 1992 in Wenatchee, Washington.