Hi! Since you've made it down this far, I guess we should meet. This is the place where I'm supposed to give you my background and wow you with the reasons why I'm the smartest guy on the block when it comes to old spaceships, general philosophical theory, and saving your sector of the Universe…or something like that. Well, ok….but first…
I'd like you to meet someone. He's a kid of about 13 who had been reading a lot of 'crazy Sci-Fi' books since he was eight (including the Daybreak -2250 A.D mentioned elsewhere). Of course a lot of his peers called him a "Space Cadet" (which meant he wasn't down to earth) and his elders laughed at his ridiculous dreams about people flying off into space to the moon or even other planets.
But he had a dream. He wanted to be a part of this future in Space. It was the grandest adventure he'd ever heard of. Besides the ideas like jetpacks that could make you fly, color televisions you could hang on your wall, and telephones you could carry in your pocket really made him excited about the future. It was these inventions, predicted in his 'crazy' sci-fi books…and those big glasses (jet pilots weren't allowed to wear glasses) that made him consider a future engineering career, in Aviation--since that was the closest thing there was to space at the time.
Then came Sputnik and overnight the world changed. As he was about to enter High School, he witnessed America's disastrous attempt to launch Vanguard 1. The Space Race was on and he just had to be a part of it. But there was no money for a higher education after High School. Besides, there was the draft. If you didn't join, or get married, the Army would come and get you. What to do?
The solution was to turn a bad thing into a good one. He discovered that the Army would train him as an Electronic Technician specializing in Radar systems, IF his aptitude was good enough. It was when he was tested the highest possible score for mechanics and electronics that he found the first of his native abilities, technology. Happily, right after graduation he was guaranteed a highly technical school that would allow him to work his way through college and on toward his dream. So he joined the Army figuring it would be a quick four month basic training program and then off to the school and the future of his dreams.
Then he discovered that there was a catch. (Uh Oh! This is what you look like when you've just discovered you signed 3 years of your life away for something you might not get!)
The Army didn't need all those Radar Technicians and they were going to flunk out about 85% of everybody who started the school! Then they could use the men for something else…like foot soldiers! The competition was fierce. Day by day, week-by-week, men around him were eliminated and shipped off to other duties. Concentrating hard, he buckled down, determined that he was not going to lose his only chance to make something of himself. Then, one day when he only had a few weeks of school left, the Army called him and a dozen others into a meeting. Fearing the worst, he was surprised to discover that he had placed so high in his class the Army was offering him an additional, more sophisticated Computer repair class. Little did he know this would be the beginning of his Aerospace career.
Within weeks of starting his new school, he had been invited to watch the launching of America's second man in space and had toured the not-yet-completed Apollo blockhouse that would someday see man go to the moon. The new class was tough, but he did well.
Graduating at the top of his class, he was soon assigned to a Nike Missile battery defending a Strategic Air Force Base and some mysterious installations of something called "ATLAS." Still this was in the heartland of America and he never dreamed anything could endanger him there. He would just finish up his enlistment and go home and back to College.
That is, until that fateful day in October 1962, when he was on the Missile Tracking Console. He picked up the red phone and received the command to go to DEFCON 2--FULL ALERT. Minutes later, he saw president Kennedy announce the Cuban Missile Crisis and he knew he was on the front line of the world's first Nuclear war. One that could be over in 15 minutes…any hour, of any day.
Those two weeks changed his attitude, and his life. At the end of the crisis, he completed his self-taught studies and received his FCC 1st class License. He also began his life long study of philosophy and his research into the meaning of life.
His next duty assignment would be at the very birthplace of America's rocket development, White Sands Proving grounds. While working there, he would witness his first rocketship graveyard and take part in other rocket launchings. This rekindled his dream of being involved in Aerospace.
Out of the Army, he found his way to California's Silicon Valley at the height of its feverish growth period. It was the late 1960s and the world was catching Apollo fever. While working for a small defense contractor, he was suddenly assigned to be a QA Inspector on the Apollo/LEM Communication Antenna systems. Happily he oversaw the preliminary testing and trial flight of the system on a simulated run to the Moon and back. It performed gloriously. These would be the antennas that would later broadcast pictures of men on the Moon and he had tested them.
But there would be more to come. Later his job would include being Product engineer for Microwave Hybrid components that were made specifically for the Space Shuttle. Meanwhile he attended evening meetings at Stanford and other local Colleges on the latest Philosophical debates and studies. Always involved, he declined various opportunities to publish theories in that area but continued his studies into the nature of man while he worked on ever more sophisticated space hardware.
One of his next achievements was the responsibility for the manufacturing of Hi-Reliability Transceivers that were to go into the TDRSS, IntelSat IV, GOES, and SCS series Satellite systems. He has several 'birds' flying in orbit today that still use the systems he, and his manufacturing team produced those many years ago. One of them, GOES (Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite), is the satellite that gives the evening weather forecaster on every TV station in America, the visual and infrared inputs that are the basis of the evening forecast.
Another of his 'Birds' was named "SuperBird" by the Japanese who sponsored it and today it provides much of the TV, radio, and telephone communications for the islands of Japan.
During his time as an Aerospace Engineer, he began studying the development of spaceships from concept to reality becoming a recognized authority when he co-authored and illustrated The Spaceship Handbook. He has also written articles on spaceships for Filmfax magazine and produced Illustrations for the AIAA Houston's newsletter, Horizons (April, 2008). Presently, he is releasing his second book, The Saucer Fleet (also co-authored with Jack Hagerty) which studies the social development of the flying saucer in the entertainment media in modern society.
Throughout his career he continued his studies and has degrees in Industrial and Systems Engineering from SJSU, Certifications in Program Management from UC, and Manufacturing Engineering from SME. Altogether his career in Aerospace spanned 30 years.
He was a speaker at the National Association of Rocketry Convention in Austin (NARCON 2002), the American Astronautical Society (AAS) 50th Annual National Convention (2003), and was interviewed along with co-author Jack Hagerty on Mike Hodel's Hour 25 online Radio program at the San Jose World SF Convention (ConJose).
Today he resides north of Seattle, Washington and has a private consulting service (RogerService!) available at Rogerservice.com.
He is available for lectures on the subjects of "Spaceship in history and the future," as well as general Philosophy, the history of the Cold War, technology, and the Aerospace industry.
Today, he still insists that he is still that little boy who had a love for Space Exploration and Adventure, he just looks different.
"I've had so many dreams come true. That is why I believe in the power of Dreams!"