Sunday, December 18, 2011

Sharing Memories - 50 Years Ago - Keesler


50 Years Ago
December 14, 1961

Second lieutenant William L. Smith, son of Mr. and Mrs. Leverne Smith, Route 1, Coon Rapids, successfully completed a course in Introduction to Accounting I through the United States Armed Forces Institute, Madison, Wisc. He graduated from Coon Rapids Community High School in 1957 and graduated from Iowa State University in 1961. Before entering the Air Force, the lieutenant was a computer programmer with the Space Technology Labs, Inc. Los Angeles, Calif. He and his wife, the former Nancy Bolger, are now residing in Biloxi, Miss., where he is a student in ground elections with the 3401st School Squadron, Keesler Air Force Base, Miss.

Observations and memories:

1) Since I chose a science major at ISU, and graduated with my B.S. in Math, I had taken now business courses in college. As a student worker at the Ames Atomic Energy Commission Physics lab during my Junior and Senior year, I realized I was actually more interested in the business side, the paper work side, of science research than in the science/physics research itself. With my three-year Air Force commitment already in place, it made the decision easy to begin taking business related courses through the U.S. Armed Forces Institute (in this case, actually, the University of Wyoming!) as soon as I went on active duty, even while attending 'ground electronics' school at work. These were correspondence courses, at that time, of course.

2) Curiously, just a couple of days ago, Nancy and I were talking about the 'architectural drawing' course I also took through USAFI... that was a 'fun' course - but I've used what I learned there, many times, through the years, as we bought and sold homes. Interesting side issues to being in the military.

3) That first accounting course, above, that I completed eventually led to a Master's degree in Business Administration (MBA), from Drake University, with an emphasis in accounting, that led me to qualify for the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) certificate, in about 1974, which I held for 26 years. For various reasons, I never obtained my license to practice public accounting, but I spent nearly 20 in private accounting. A great early decision in life, that paid dividends for many years that followed.

Families are Forever!  ;-)

Note: See label, Sharing Memories, below in the left sidebar, for earlier Sharing Memories posts.


  1. Wow! This was a fascinating post. I'd love to see many more posts like this one. It was chuck full of new information about your life. Using the news article was a great springboard for drawing out memories. Wonderful idea.

    This would actually make a unique format for an autobiography that is written around artifacts, articles, photos, primary documents. I think some people who would be overwhelmed by writing a memoir might find this an easy why to talk about their life.

  2. Thank you. I agree. A few others already exist under the label: Sharing Memories (lower left sidebar). I'll try to do more, regularly. ;-)