Skip to comments.OBITUARY: Morris R. Jeppson, 87, an Enola Gay weaponeer who armed atomic bomb
Posted on 04/07/2010 4:56:35 PM PDT by traumer
Morris R. Jeppson, 87, one of two weaponeers who armed the atomic bomb that was dropped on Hiroshima in 1945, prompting the surrender of Japanese troops and the end of World War II, died March 30 at a hospital in Las Vegas. His family could not provide a specific cause of death but said he had been hospitalized for back pain and a severe headache.
Known as "Dick," Mr. Jeppson was a 23-year-old Army Air Forces second lieutenant when he boarded the Enola Gay, a B-29 bomber, for what would be his first and only combat mission.
It was the wee hours of the morning on Aug. 6, 1945, and "Little Boy," the bomb that would introduce the world to nuclear warfare, lay in the plane's belly in safe mode. It had to be armed in flight en route to its target to avoid accidental detonation during takeoff.
At 2:45 a.m., the Enola Gay and its cargo took off from Tinian Island in the Pacific and headed for Hiroshima, 1,800 miles and six hours away. Lt. Jeppson, the weapons test officer, and his boss, Navy Capt. William S. Parsons, climbed into the airplane's bomb bay to ready Little Boy for discharge.
Capt. Parsons was responsible for installing the charge that would be fired into the weapon's uranium core, setting off a nuclear explosion. Lt. Jeppson armed the bomb's electrical system, pulling out three green safety plugs and replacing them with red firing plugs.
Nobody but the two weaponeers knows for sure who was last to touch the warhead. Reference books and historical accounts differ.
But it's likely that Lt. Jeppson "put the last thing into the bomb that made it hot," said Dik Daso, curator of modern military aircraft at the Smithsonian's National Air and Space Museum.
(Excerpt) Read more at washingtonpost.com ...
remember when gay wasn’t code for “pervert”?
You did good, sir.
What a strange time coincidence with Obama’s de-nuclearization of the USA....
May he rest in peace ...
He probably saved millions of lives by ending WW-II early.
Mr. Jeppson received a bachelor’s degree in physics at the University of California at Berkeley. He went on to work for the university’s radiation laboratory and at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory before founding his own company, which built linear accelerators for research and medical applications.
In 1962, he started a second company, which produced industrial microwave ovens. He retired after selling that company in 1970....
What a FULL PRODUCTIVE life !
The B-29 was named after Enola Gay Tibbets, the mother of the pilot, Paul Tibbets.
yeah, well, nowadays it would mean something entirely different.
Heroes all, from the dreamers, engineers, scientists developers armorers, pilots and crew, maintainers, everyone associated with the miracle of nuclear weapons and their delivery, during the world war.
Now an idiot without a scintilla of thought or recognition of the miracle of the Manhattan Project and the MILLIONS of lives saved by the use of the weapons indicates his willingness to chuck the whole thing and turn his nation into what?
I got to meet Col. Tibbets at an air show, They saved millions of American and Japanese lives.
A true hero.
Mr. Jepperson most probably died of a Broken Heart with the latest Outrageous news that OBOZO was cutting Our Nuclear Arsenal and telling All of Our Enemies that America will NOT use the Bombs on them, no matter what! Mr. Jepperson was a True American Hero and Patriot! as opposed to the Imposter living in the White House! A Sad day for Ameria!
You did your duty - and likely saved my father-in-law’s life. May choirs of angels sing you home!
Mr. Jeppson is the correct spelling! Apologies!
Thank you patriot, and may you rest in peace.
It has been a long time since I flew as a private pilot, but I vaguely remember a piece of equipment we used in calculating some aspect of our flight planning that bore the name Jeppson or something awfully close. FWIW.
You’re thinking of Jeppesen. He was an airline pilot who began drawing up hand sketches of approaches to airports, showing obstructions, etc and selling them to airline pilots. Later he expanded the service to much wider coverage of airports and airways and offering subscriptions to the general aviation public. I think his company did also sell a version of the “E6B computer”, a slide rule like calculator for working out headings, ground speed, etc. The Jeppesen charts could be carried in a specially made briefcase usually known as a “Jepp case” which was usually the mark of a pilot on the way to work.
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