J. M. Dodds Collection
James M. Dodds was born on October 24, 1934. In 1953, he joined the U.S. Air Force where he served as a Crew Chief on the B-47 on active duty. He was honorably discharged with the rank of Staff Sergeant in December 1960.
After leaving the USAF he went to work as a mechanic for American Airlines until 1963. From 1963 to 1967, he was manager of McCafferty Service, Inc., a company that was contracted to transport mail for the U.S. Postal Service over various routes.
In 1967, he went to Vietnam on a contract to Dnyalectron Corp. He served as a Quality Control Technical Representative with the U.S. Army 1st CAV, and was responsible for inspection of their helicopter fleet. In 1967, he went to work for Air America in Saigon as a Crew Chief, and in 1968, he was promoted to Superintendent of Quality Control Activities in Vietnam. In 1972, he transferred to flight duty and worked as a flight mechanic on CH-47C, Bell 204, and Bell 205 Helicopters in Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Vietnam.
Dodds left Air America in 1974, and went to work as an inspector for Trans-New England Airlines in Akron, Ohio. This was by work with Frakes Aviation in Cleburne, Texas until 1976. In 1978, Dodds was employed by European Helicopter Establishment as a Flight Engineer/Crew Chief assigned to the Libyan Air Force. He continued to have a series of contract maintenance jobs working for T&G Aviation and Airgo Inc. in 1978, Kalitta/American International Airways in 1984, and Kitty Hawk Air Cargo in 1996.
Since 2001, Dodds has been contracted to Sports Jet LLC as a flight mechanic maintaining a B-757-200 and a B-737-400. In 2003, James M. Dodds was the recipient of the Charles E Taylor "Master Mechanic" Award from the Federal Aviation Administration as an aircraft mechanic. He started out as a Mechanic in 1953, and that was the year they celebrated Wright brothers 50 years of powered flight. He received the award for his 50 years service in the year that they celebrated the 100th year of powered flight. He was given the award on March 11, 2004. It was presented by Charles E. Taylor II, the Great-Grandson of Charles E. Taylor. Charles E. Taylor was the Wright Brothers’ engine builder and the first aircraft mechanic.
Permission to publish material from this collection in any form, current or future, must be obtained from the Special Collections and Archives Division, Eugene McDermott Library, The University of Texas at Dallas.