Robert “Bob” Searles provides biographical information about his life prior to becoming a smokejumper, including his college years, and working in the radio and television business. Searles explains how he became a conscientious objector and what led to his decision to train as a smokejumper. He recalls his first jump, which resulted in two sprained ankles, and details a difficult let-down when he got his chute caught in a tree. Searles describes some of his off-duty activities, including transplanting trees, working as a cook, and assisting with a training movie. He discusses two experiences he had involving a moose and another with a mountain lion while working on a fire. Searles recalls the camaraderie among the Civilian Public Service [CPS] smokejumpers as well as other servicemen, and he emphasizes his continued support of pacifism.
American Friends Service Committee; Civilian Public Service; Conscientious objectors, United States; Smokejumpers, Montana; Smokejumpers, Oregon; World War, 1939-1945; The Charlie Ruggles Show, Oxford movement; Gandhi, Mahatma; Methodist Church; Cooley, Earl; Wesley Club Student Union; Smokejumper training; Cascade Locks, Oregon; Big Meadow Creek Fire; Seeley Lake, Montana; Missoula, Montana
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 (11 p.: 28 cm.)
Searles, Robert, "Robert Searles Interview, August 12, 1986" (1986). Civilian Public Service Smokejumpers Oral History Project. 3.