Robert "Bob" Painter discusses his Quaker background, and obtaining conscientious objector status when he was drafted during World War Two. He details how he became a smokejumper and his training in Missoula, Montana, at Nine Mile and in Oregon at Cave Junction. Painter describes his first fire jump, becoming assistant director to his unit in Oregon, and the duties of the job. He talks about the relationship among the smokejumpers, the Forest Service, and the community. He also relates how the resistance churches and some members of the community felt about conscientious objectors. Painter describes some of his memorable fire experiences, including when the plane engines stopped working mid-flight and when parachutes didn’t open correctly. He concludes by discussing what being a conscientious objector meant to him and fighting to keep his objector status after he was drafted a second time.
Jack Heintzelman; American Friends Service Committee; Quakers; Civilian Public Service; Conscientious objectors, United States; Smokejumpers, Montana; Smokejumpers, Oregon; World War, 1939-1945
Civilian Public Service Smokejumpers Oral History Project, OH 163, Archives and Special Collections, Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula
University of Montana--Missoula. Mansfield Library
Copyright to this collection is held by the interview participants and by the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library, University of Montana-Missoula. Permission may be required for use. For further information please contact Archives and Special Collections: (406) 243-2053 / firstname.lastname@example.org
Oral History Number
1 sound cassette (01:00:00 min.) analog + 1 transcript (10 p.: 28 cm.)
Painter, Robert, "Robert "Bob" Painter Interview, August 12, 1986" (1986). Civilian Public Service Smokejumpers Oral History Project. 1.