An Anchor in the Prairie
by Bill Forbes
“As a kid I guess I was too dumb or naïve to realize that I was poor.” So writes Bill Forbes about his growing up years in Middle America in the 1940s and ’50s. Bill’s early years will bring back fond memories to many. Others will enjoy the tale of a simpler time and wish they could have been there. From his humble beginnings, he began a journey that would take him through three careers and into retirement.
This small town boy from the prairie of Illinois would witness the wonders of the Pacific Ocean, serve in the U.S. Navy in wartime, sell encyclopedias door-to-door, interview four U.S. Presidents in a 20-year broadcast journalism career, and wind up his working years as a Navy civil service employee in the nation’s capital. Bill is the guy who burned a hole in Bill Clinton’s brand new office carpet, walked beneath the Arkansas River, flew more than 1200 hours in a news helicopter, and survived the bureaucracy that is Washington, D.C.
As he looks back on more than six decades, Bill Forbes still feels the influence of the U.S. Navy. He says, “I’m still a Fleet Sailor at heart.”
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