Today’s #VeteranOfTheDay is Army Air Forces Veteran David W. Stoddard, who served as an aircraft mechanic during World War II.
David W. Stoddard was born in Cohasset, Massachusetts in 1924. Stoddard grew up with three brothers, Charles, Sheldon and Elmer, all of whom served during World War II in the European and African Theaters.
During World War II, he enlisted in the Army Air Forces and began his service as an aircraft mechanic. He received training to be an aircraft technician at P-40, P-61 and C-54 factory schools. Stoddard initially served with the Second Ferrying Group at the Air Transport Command in Wilmington, Delaware. He later served with the North Africa Division of the Air Transport Command.
After he discharged from the Army Air Forces in 1946, he went on to get Civil Aviation Authority certified as an aircraft and aircraft engine mechanic.
In 1948, Stoddard began working for Chance Vought Aircraft in Dallas as a hydraulic tech in the experimental aircraft department. He later worked at Edwards Air Force Base on the Regulus 1 and 2 Cruise Missile flight test programs. He also briefly worked at North America on the B-70 aircraft as a tube mock-up tech. In 1961, he accepted a position as a rocket engine tech at NASA Flight Research Center. Here, he participated in numerous research programs under the supervision of Jack Russell before retiring in 1984.
Post-retirement, he volunteered at the Joe Walker Middle School, helping students build a model of the lunar landing research vehicle. He also volunteered at the Edwards Air Force Base Museum in 2002 to help fabricate display boxes and restore items for the museum. Stoddard currently resides in Lancaster, California.
We thank him for his service.
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Graphic artist: Deanna Cannon