The People You Meet on The High Seas: Dick Jeppson

Dick was indeed the last person I thought I’d meet.

Worked with the Nobel Prize winning physicist Luis Alvarez. Engaged in some research on gems stones early in his career, he noticed that they sparkled when subjected to high energy radiation. The rubies were, of course, lasing and Dick just missed being the discoverer of lasers. Alvarez used to kid him about it all the time…… but that is not why you know him. Dick was aboard the B-29 Superfortress Enola Gay on August 6, 1945, and somewhere over the Pacific went back to arm the detonation device on ‘Little Boy’. Recalling the famous mission, he said that, from the perspective of the cockpit,  it was a non-event: ‘Just another milk run’. Later, Dick went on the to run a company that produced linear accelerators for medical purposes.

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