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Richard A. "Dick" Strong ( Missoula 1949 )

posted: Jun 6, 2020

Dick died February 16, 2017. In a 2004 interview for Smokejumper magazine, he remembered that he was on the jump list for three years (48-50) but did not get many jumps. The late 40s was part of a mild decade in terms of forest fires. Half of his jumps were with Fred Brauer (MSO-41). On a fire near the Middle Fork of the Salmon River, he missed the jump spot and landed in the river. The novelty of this event is only in his mind.

After his time as a jumper, he worked at Potlatch Forests, now Weyerhaeuser. Then there was a two-year hiatus when Uncle Sam requested his services. Civilian life continued in 1954 when Dick went to work for the Forest Service as an engineer. Nothing was routine in that position, and he enjoyed it immensely. However, promotions meant more money and so, when the position of Forester came along, he grabbed it to "try a new thing." Dick retired from the FS in 1987.