Thursday, August 30, 2012

The C-130 Carried Me to Safety

Years later, I work for the company that built it
by Tuyet-Hanh S.

I was born in Saigon, Vietnam. In April of 1975, just two weeks before the fall of Saigon, my mom, my brother and I boarded a C-130 airplane from Tan Son Nhat International Airport to leave the only home I had ever known. My dad was already in the United State at Ft. Monmouth in New Jersey. I was seven-years-old. Little did I know that years later, I would be working for the same company that built the plane that brought me to safety.

Coming Full Circle!

A Passion for Space

It was handed down by my father
by Warren R.

A passion for space runs in my blood. My father (Bob) began his career as a “rocket scientist” with AC Sparkplug Company in Wisconsin, where he was assigned to program the simulation of the Titan two-stage missile, using a pair of IBM 650s. It turned out that the IBM 650s were way too puny, so he every Monday to Detroit, GM's Tech Center, where the “large-scale” IBM 704 was available. They likewise were way too slow, but it was what was available, so he worked nearly non-stop, round the clock for months, having food brought in, sleeping on the floor or on desks, going to a motel every third day for a shower if he was lucky. But Sputnik went overhead, he and his equally young team saw it and were energized by it. And during this effort, the Butterfly Effect was “discovered”–not that they knew it. Programming changes made in binary (imagine!) caused an error in the last place of a constant, and in the hypersensitive equations, this caused a targeting error of over two miles and a nightmarish debugging effort, ultimately resolved.

More than five decades later, I have a fantastic career in the space business. I’ve had the privilege of working on software for the Titan 34D, Titan IV and Atlas rockets, the Centaur upperstage, numerous spacecraft including Mars probes and landers, Stardust, Genesis, multiple classified programs and SBIRS  The challenges have been great and the programs exciting, with more to come! 

I have a fantastic career!

Truly Inspirational: F-22 and F-35

Vast talent, resources and innovative solutions move mountains
by Adrian E.

The highlight of my career so far has been the first flights of the F-22 and F-35 programs. I was blessed to be a part of both programs from the beginning of the development phase to first flight. The focus and energy level of the team on each program in the months leading up to first flight was truly inspirational. The level of teamwork and cooperation during these times was unlike any other time in my career. During these days, the team was completely focused on the end goal and priorities were crystal clear to everyone. Trivial issues weren’t a factor and cooperation abound. Many couldn’t wait to get here in the morning and found it hard to leave in the evening. When the actual first flight day finally arrived, there was much anticipation and anxiety but the feeling quickly turned into euphoria once the aircraft lifted off the runway. I am very proud to work for Lockheed Martin and proud of the important work we do and the products we produce. I am convinced that we can do anything we set our minds to because of our vast talent, resources and innovative solutions. I am very grateful to have had assignments that I enjoyed while at the same time providing for my family. I feel very fortunate to be a small part of our rich heritage and am doing my part to leave the company better than I found it for my colleagues of the future.

Integrity Matters

Going on 14 years of service
by Jerry T.

I’ve been part of Lockheed Martin, going on 14 years of service. I’ve received 15 recognition rewards for my commitment to our customer and company, delivering many mission systems on schedule and budget, with the utmost quality. Team-focused, supporting various Lockheed Martin organizations and associates, meeting critical field deployments. Integrity matters!

The Foundation of a Love for Airplanes

Thank you, Lockheed Martin
by Dennis M.

I can remember as if it were it was just yesterday, my dad was bringing me out to the plant in Marietta for all of the Christmas festivities and free toys. Occasional "open houses" were always events to look forward to in our community to see what was going on at as my dad put it, "the bomber plant." This, coupled with almost daily C-5s screaming across the skies with their signature sound above my house, laid the foundation for my love for airplanes. What a treat to go to the local drugstore and buy a model airplane as a kid to build what had been built and flown less than five miles away. Some 45 years later, coupled with 28 years of seniority at Air Force Plant #6, I have come to call this place my home and career. Untold priceless relationships have been made, as well as monetary compensation to live a comfortable life putting two daughters through college. Sure, it's had some good times and sad ones as well, but I would have to say "if it all ended today, it has been a good ride and I am thankful for the opportunities presented me," not to mention my love for aircraft and knowledge gleaned has expanded greatly. Thank you, Lockheed Martin.

Listen – Think – Deliver Trust

Proud my work directly impacts our customer’s satisfaction
by Joan C.

Lockheed Martin has supported the Social Security Administration for 22 years.

In 2002, an SSA Branch Chief was unhappy because we were behind in schedule and there was a challenging personality conflict with our head programmer/lead. I was delighted to have the opportunity to restore trust. I listened, took notes and took action with our team to develop programming documentation on three different systems and we turned around a less-than-desirable situation and delivered everything on time after nine months.

I'm glad to be one part of the Lockheed Martin team, especially whenever I know my work directly impacts our customer's satisfaction.

Simple, Humble Work Grew to Impact the World

Lockheed Martin innovation changed how people live today
by Bill S.

I am blessed to have been involved in a number of innovative developments that changed the world and how people live today. I worked on the development of the Trident submarine's integrated radio room, which was the first fully automated communications suite for a Navy platform. Then, I worked on the development of a prototype three satellite positioning system called GPS. It was designed to aid Navy ships and Marine units to accurately position themselves. I also worked on the initial development and testing of a four node system known as ARPANET to help the Navy lower the impact of stored documentation on ships. I worked closely with the newly formed IP and the TCP Committees, which were later combined into the IP/TCP Committee to establish a connected system that could utilize the newly established HTML technology to share documents and manuals. 

Additionally, I attended conference calls with Stanford Research Incorporated personnel, which included Mrs. Cisco, working on routing technology. Later, I led a development team that produced the Operations Support System which Admiral Tuttle selected as his core for his new Navy Command and Control system to be renamed GCCS-M. In every case, it was demanding, challenging, innovative and leading-edge technology work that was initially designed for very limited and selective use. We had no idea how much our simple and humble work would grow, expand and impact the world and how it operates seamlessly and so importantly with people all over the world every day.

30+ Years and Going Strong

Glad to be back “home”
by Marie P.

I started with RCA back in 1981 in Camden, New Jersey. I worked in the factory, starting out as an assembler of circuit boards and similar type equipment. Next, I was wirer of harnesses and cables. In 1991, I was selected to go to a new plant called Regional Electronics Center (REC) South in Bridgeport, New Jersey, where I was a subject matter expert in assembly, machinery and testing. In 1994, the REC South plant closed, and I was forced to find employment elsewhere. I went to Harris School of Business with a GPA of 3.9. I then had some jobs at other places and was rehired with Lockheed Martin in 2001. I was very grateful that I got all of my company time back. Since then, I have been a publication coordinator specialist, a technical writer and a customer trainer.

Monday, August 27, 2012

A Career Spans 48 Years

Looking forward to new horizons in space
by Robert S.

I started with Ford Aerospace in Houston, Texas in 1966 and supported the Apollo Program, Apollo Soyuz, Skylab and the initial Shuttle approach and landing test. I was a quality engineer supporting installation and testing of ground support equipment in the Apollo simulation area. Then I was a supervisor of the quality support group in the Johnson Space Center Mission Control Center (MCC). I worked in the MCC full time on the Apollo flights 15 through 17. Prior to that, I worked on the Apollo 13 flight support equipment and assisted the successful effort to install new equipment into the MCC to monitor key hardware parameters in the disabled vehicle, all in three days’ time. This was the highlight of my career spanning 48 years. 

When I left the space program in the 1980s, I supported the Air Force Satellite Control Facility network headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. I was the quality manager in Sunnyvale with Ford Aerospace, and Lockheed Martin Sunnyvale was our maintenance and operation subcontractor. I left after eight years and joined a mid-range defense contractor, building avionics for the Navy, Air Force and Army. I joined Lockheed Martin in 2006 to work on the next space vehicle, the Orion Crew Module as a quality engineer. I have enjoyed working on this important program and look forward to the first Orion orbital flight in 2014.

Three Generations Strong

Supporting our military spans decades
by Kristen L.

I am a third-generation Lockheed Martin/Martin Marietta/Martin Airplane employee. My grandfather worked for the company in Middle River, Maryland. My father started with Martin Marietta in Waterton, Colorado, in 1981, and just retired last year. I was a Martin Marietta scholarship recipient and started my Lockheed Martin career when I graduated from the University of Colorado. My sister also works for the company in Springfield, Virginia.

Proud of Her Lockheed Martin Heritage

Paying It Forward

Together, we trek building the world’s finest military equipment
by Ian O’B.

On September 1, 1997, I was fishing at Aurora Reservoir in Colorado. I wasn’t catching anything, but the man and his son next to me were. I kindly asked what he was using for bait and he gave me a few orange plastic salmon eggs. The next thing you know I was reeling them in. I struck a conversation with them and asked the man what it was that he did for a living. He told me he had training to work with satellites from the U.S. Air Force when he was in the Korean Air Force, and now he built them for Lockheed Martin. I realized that military training was the key to such an important job and so I enlisted in the Navy. I served five years as an aviation electrician in an S-3B squadron, and when my enlistment was up I found a job in Marietta, Georgia, at Lockheed Martin Aeronautics as an electrical and electronics mechanic. One month later a man transferred in from Colorado where there were layoffs and was my working partner on the final assembly line. It was the same man that had offered me the orange plastic salmon eggs five years before. The path that I found was the same one that Mr. Chong took long before me. It was not an easy path by any means. It requires skills, commitment, sacrifice and ability. Together we trek building the worlds’ finest military equipment for the people that fight for us.

NASA New Technology Award Winner

AI effort was the highlight of my career
by Dan B.

In the late 1980s, Martin Marietta had a robust artificial intelligence (AI) research team. We built one of the world’s most sophisticated scheduling systems, called MAESTRO. It allowed representation of very complex activities and constraints, and built “good” schedules hundreds of times faster than humans. We applied it to the problem of scheduling all activities on what was the Martin Marietta design for the common modules on the proposed Space Station Freedom. A common module power system breadboard was developed, and interfaced with a fault isolation and detection system (another AI effort at Martin Marietta), which was interfaced with MAESTRO. 

Operators were able to schedule activities automatically, then execute the power usages for them on the breadboard. When a researcher threw a wrench on the breadboard, shorting out some power paths, the fault isolation system safed the breadboard, then communicated the power system changes to the scheduler. MAESTRO determined which activities had been interrupted, found ways to continue some using alternate resources, curtailed others and scheduled other activities that could use released resources, displaying the changes for the user. The operator was given a limited time to review the changes and then released the revised schedule. All of this took on the order of five minutes, from fault to continuing with work-arounds in place. The system won a NASA New Technology Award, and resulted in a number of research publications and invited talks at major conferences. Being part of that effort was a highlight of my career.

It’s a Privilege to Help Employees

Doing everything in my power to keep employees healthy
by Charlotta T.

I started with Lockheed Martin in January 2011. I had been seeking full-time employment for nine months when I got a call from a recruiter for a job two miles from my home. A brand-new Wellness Center was built and then opened December 8, 2011.

It has been a privilege to care for the several hundred employees here. I have diagnosed early melanoma on an employee, helped them get early treatment and hopefully helped save a life. Other employees have received help in controlling their high-blood pressure, diabetes and other chronic illness. Free health screenings have identified employees with these conditions and helped get them early treatment to prevent the damage from these illnesses. Free flu shots and educational lunch-and-learns have also helped employees and their families stay healthy.

As a friend said, "I thought you had three children, and now you have several hundred." I do feel a strong connection to my co-workers here and will do everything in my power to help them healthy.

Empowered to Design

Our innovations support the Social Security Administration
by David S.

I am an information technology specialist who has been empowered with the privilege to design and apply innovation to some of the foundation systems at SSA. These mission-critical systems support Americans. Since 2003, I have been a lead developer on many system implementations and lead author on many essential system documents. 

The Evolution of a Culture of Health

The best is yet to come
by Marleece B.

I started my career with Lockheed Martin in 2000, just four years after I completed medical training. As site physician, I was responsible for occupational health. Fitness and wellness was a personal passion, but a small component of my work responsibility. My work group refurbished an old worksite fitness center with commitment from Lockheed Martin and NASA leadership. It was phenomenal to see fitness equipment on site. Employees could improve their strength and endurance, and even relieve stress. That milestone marked the beginning of my personal mission to improve the health and well-being of Lockheed Martin employees.

I left the company in 2006, but returned in 2011 to continue my personal mission. I could not have anticipated the strides made in the past six years. There is a robust and complete Health & Wellness organization. A medical infrastructure supports the health and well-being of over 120,000 Lockheed Martin employees. We have Regional Managing Physicians and teams of health professionals in on-site Wellness Centers across the country. Numerous programs support employees and their families to be the healthiest they can be. From tobacco cessation support to Virgin HealthMiles fitness challenges, to health coaching and condition management programs available through the integrated LM HealthWorks Plan, I’ve seen a consistent commitment from Lockheed Martin to the health of its employees.

We’re aiming to become the healthiest workforce in the aerospace and defense industry. I’ve seen a significant and magnificent transformation over the past 12 years … and I believe the best is yet to come.

Friday, August 24, 2012

“Award Winner” in Aerospace and Transportation

Lockheed Martin has been the source of the most rewarding work of all
by Thomas A.

My career has allowed me to experience a broad ranging and interesting set of problems to solve. From cars, trucks, trains, commercial and military aircraft, strategic missiles, high energy kinetic weapons, kinetic kill vehicles, high energy lasers, civil spacecraft and software, Lockheed Martin has been the source of the most rewarding work of all.

In chronological order, they are:

  • Ford Motor Company: concept design of the first: Ford adjustable seat back, removable tailgate.
  • Pullman Standard: stress analysis of the first 100+ mph freight car truck.
  • California Lockheed Aircraft Company: COSMIC NASTRAN stress analysis software development; conceptual design, analysis and testing of the first composite commercial aircraft structures for damage tolerance, fuel containment and lightning strike protection.
  • Lockheed Missiles & Space Company:conceptual and detailed design of structures, and mechanical integration of: D5 Fleet Ballistic Missile, Cruise Missiles, Lockheed Launch Vehicle, NASA Advanced Crew Rescue Vehicle, U.S. Navy Advanced Bomb Family, NASA Advanced Solid Rocket Motor, Theater High Altitude Area Defense proposal.
  • SPARTA: large bore magnetic rail guns; kinetic kill vehicle structures.
  • Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company: structures and mechanical integration management of: THAAD Dem/Val program kill vehicle structures, Lockheed Martin Commercial Space A2100, Lockheed Martin Shuttle Tile Operations, airborne laser; software program management: Enterprise Product Data Management development and initial implementation; program management support: THAAD EMD and beyond. 
Start with the rest, FINISH with the BEST!

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

My Grandmother Was “Rosie”

I'm proud to be part of the same company
by Steve S.

My grandmother; Maggie William, with a college degree in hand, signed up and was one of the original “Rosie the Riveters" who helped design the B-26 Marauder forward Bombay escape hatch. I am proud to be part of the same company that my grandmother worked for.

Accelerating Tomorrow Has Been a Way of Life

Lockheed Martin is all in the family
by David W.

My father worked for Lockheed Martin. My mother worked for Lockheed Martin. My father-in-law worked for Lockheed Martin. My wife worked for Lockheed Martin. My sister-in-law, my brother-in-law, all worked for Lockheed Martin, as I do to this day. In this family alone, well OVER 100 years of Accelerating Tomorrow. My grateful thanks to this company for all it has meant to my family and friends.

One Degree of Separation

Aviation comes full circle
by Jeff H.

My first year with the Legacy Martin Marietta Company was in Orlando in 1983. Not long after I started, a long-time employee, a supervisor in the area that used the mainframe systems I supported, announced his retirement. In the conversation he told me that he had nearly 40 years with the company. He started at Middle River building airplanes. Yes, he had known Glenn L. Martin. He also said then that if we still built airplanes, he would not retire. Now nearly 30 years later, celebrating the 100th anniversary of the company, it seems remarkable that I and many others have only one degree of separation from the man at that founding moment 100 years ago. And my colleague, long since passed, might be right at home again. Since the merger with Lockheed, we have been back in the airplane business.

Bravery and Commitment

Like a cow chewing bumble bees
by Bradley K.

What an opportunity to share my story!

I am what they call one of the last of the Baby Boomers, born in 1959, but my story is a mix of me and my father. Throughout my childhood, my dad would tell hair-raising stories about flying bombing missions over North Africa during World War II. The stories would regress further in time, about when he was a test pilot for the “Martin Company.” Those stories were equally thrilling, as my brothers and I would sit on the edge of our seats listening to the accounts of immeasurable bravery and commitment these individuals demonstrated every day. Then, later as the war effort continued, Uncle Sam took anyone who could fly a plane.

My part of the story starts back in 1979 after completing my schooling and starting my own personal business in the oil field. I was forced to dissolve that business due to the political climate of the time, and I was hired into a company called “Martin Marietta” in 1981 on the Peacekeeper program.

By that time, my father was very close to the end of his days. When I had told him of my new employment here he lit up as he would say, “like a cow chewing bumble bees.”

I feel so fortunate to have worked on so many different programs for Lockheed Martin and have held many positions. I also think my father would feel that way.

A Wonderful Workhorse

Lockheed C-141’s illustrious history
by Mark W.

When I enlisted as an avionics systems technician in the Air Force Reserves, the Lockheed C-141 was being extended to become the C-141B Starlifter. The cargo jet was a wonderful workhorse providing airlift support for Vietnam, Desert Storm, the Global War on Terrorism and numerous operations over the years. After 40 years of continuous service, the Air Force retired the last C-141. However, I can always see one of the old friends on display at McGuire Air Force Base, New Jersey.

Proudly Supporting Our Nation’s Military

Very few Americans have this honor
by James H.

In late 1986, I began my Lockheed Martin career with Martin Marietta at Cape Canaveral AFS working on the Titan space launch program. I was told at the time that the job would only be 18 months long, but I had a chance to work on a program that very few Americans would ever work on. I stayed with the program through its conclusion in 2005. The Titan rocket family sustained 50 years of space flight serving American servicemen and women by providing them with detailed intelligence on the battlefield. Today, I still proudly support our servicemen and women by working on the RERP modification program for the C-5M and providing our service people with much needed supplies and transportation in theater.

Monday, August 20, 2012

A Watershed Moment

I realized this is why we work hard and sacrifice
by Kim H.

As a young engineer, I was working on a multi-mode radar (for the F-20 Tigershark) for GE Aerospace in Utica, New York. I was learning multi-mode radar technology, software design and integration and test, all at the same time. I was immersed in the technology, wonder and excitement of making a radar happen. Flight testing for days on end, working tirelessly in the lab to make the radar work. 

One day, we saw a video of the actual test pilot using the radar in air combat mode, listening to the comments and reaction to our work product we had just delivered. All of a sudden, I realized that this is why we are working 24/7, trying to meet the needs of our customers. We work hard and sacrifice to enable the military to have what they need to stay safe themselves and keep us safe at home. I realized our real purpose and mission. I realized way back then who we work for!

That radar is still going today in the form of the GD-53 Radar for the Taiwanese government. Still operating today after 27 years. Amazing!

Roots Run Deep

The commitment to our nation spans generations
by Mary D.

Both my parents worked at Lockheed Martin heritage companies during the 1940s. My 90-year-old father, John E. Danze, worked full time at the Strategic Air Command under General Curtis LeMay. He made $50 a week, and says that was “great pay in those days.” Similar to today’s Indianapolis 500 car races, LeMay had races at Bellevue. There was a shortage of men—most had joined the service. They were building B-26 Martin Marauders and B-25 Mitchells for the war effort. There were always B-36 Pushers (biggest warplanes to wear American Stars) on the field with atomic bombs loaded on and ready to go! They flew daily from Omaha to Minneapolis for flight checks. It was a great job for a young man. They wanted to send him to New Finland Airbase. Instead, Dad served in the Coast Guard from 1942 to 1945.

In 1943, my mother, Bonnie (Johnson) Danze (who recently passed July 8, 2012) worked the night shift in the office at the Glenn L. Martin Bomber Plant, located south of Omaha, Nebraska, in Bellevue. She said she “was earning $50 a week. That was good money back then. They had lots of work to do. Lots of men were in or joining the service. Those with '4F' status (those who weren't eligible for service duty due to physical handicaps) were hired first. After work, I carpooled home to Omaha and would stop off for breakfast and dancing.” At age 19, she joined the Navy as a WAVE.

My parents, John and Bonnie, circa 1940.

The Torch Has Been Passed

My grandfather worked on Lockheed aircraft during the Korean War
by Jennifer G.

My grandfather, who passed away quite a few years ago and was retired Army and retired Air Force, worked on Lockheed planes. He was the crew chief on the Lockheed F-80 Shooting Star and the F-94 in Alaska during the Korean War.
My grandfather's spirit lives on in our work today.

Core Values in Action

It’s a way of life at Lockheed Martin
by Kartik B.

I am proud to be a member of the Lockheed Martin family! To me, Lockheed Martin stands for freedom, innovation, imagination, integrity, opportunity and above all, excellence. Good just isn't good enough! Although I've only been here less than a year, I see how deeply steeped in our culture are the Lockheed Martin core values: Do What's Right, Perform with Excellence and Respect Others. I see people living these values every day.

Recognition for Creativity and Innovation

At Lockheed Martin, ideas are implemented or recycled, never lost on deaf ears
by Karen W.

The greatest motivation I had as a Lockheed Martin employee over the past 11 years, was the opportunity to influence change, no matter how small or large. I would submit my innovative ideas through Creative Central, a workflow IT system, where a control board would review my ideas for possible implementation, contact me for collaboration, and then I would receive recognition for those ideas.

The one-inch dotted line we see under the SIP email labels was my idea—very simple and effective when reading many lines of email. The dotted line draws the eye to where the actual email message begins. I display my award certificates proudly at my work station.

The instances when an idea was not implemented, the process allowed for a “water-cooler” discussion among peers to perhaps help develop the proposal or inspire their innovative thoughts. I could also resubmit the idea at a later date if I knew of a different resource or redeveloped with a team. Ideas were implemented or recycled ... never lost!
Lockheed Martin recognizes innovation!

Saturday, August 18, 2012

The Commitment Remains Constant

Our pride bridges across generations and job titles
by Darrelyn V.

In 1962, we moved to a home in the south end of Jefferson County in Littleton, Colorado, which backed-up to a lonely stretch of road that dead ended at the Martin Marietta facility. I grew up watching hundreds of cars making their way in every day at the crack of dawn and back out at twilight. Little did I know then, I would be amongst those hundreds of people working there.

My father, now a retired member of Pipe Fitters Local Union 208, supported the build of numerous structures at the main plant as well as the Deer Creek Facility for Johns Manville, which later became a Lockheed Martin owned and operated facility. He witnessed first-hand test fires of Titan rocket engines, which were done onsite in those days. His picture even graces the front page of the Sunday, September 4th 1966 edition of the Rocky Mountain News with the caption, Labor Helps Build Mighty America, while working on the construction of the thermal vacuum chamber.

I was hired by Martin Marietta in 1984 and have continued my tenure with Lockheed Martin for the past 28 years. Many things have changed throughout the years (that dead-end road for one), however what has remained constant is the commitment to what we do and how we do it. From custodians to contractors, new hires to seasoned employees; we all take tremendous pride in the endlessly fantastic things we accomplish every day in support of our nation, our world and beyond.

Happy Anniversary!

My father worked on the construction of Titan’s thermal vacuum chamber.

Crossing the Atlantic

Lockheed aircraft made the journeys world-class
by Bettina C.

My father grew up in France and came to the United States to study metallurgy at MIT in the 1960s. The first time he crossed the Atlantic in July 1958, he flew from London to Montreal on a turboprop aircraft, with lots of stops along the way! On the return trip in August 1958, he flew on a Constellation operated by Air France. When I was growing up, we traveled a lot, and I distinctly remember flying the Lockheed Tri-Star, the L-1011 with TWA.

The Place for Innovation

Opportunities to brainstorm, design and create
by Jeff F.

I have been working for Lockheed Martin for almost nine years now at an offsite. Before I started, the name Lockheed Martin always held a special place with aviation and space exploration that I had always wanted to participate in and help in designing something new. That moment came a couple of years ago when the first Innovation Venture Project started and I was selected to attend. During the process, I attended a workshop on developing ideas and how to bring them out to a possible project. My idea was combined with about four others and our team was created. From that, our team streamlined the final concept and created a presentation that was judged with others in the process. Even though our idea was not selected for the next round, I am extremely thankful for the opportunity to be given the chance to come up with an idea and work it to a possible project that could lead to another line of business. I am looking forward to further challenges in my career with Lockheed Martin.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Gazing Skyward, Their Power Is Awesome

I was an eyewitness to brilliance in action
by Ed S.

As a youngster in the early 1960s, I was one of many who would rush outside when the loud rumble of a missile launch echoed throughout the otherwise quiet valley in which Lompoc, California, is situated. I remember gazing skyward and wondering just how brilliant were the men and women who could make those things fly those awesome vehicles with powerful names like Thor, Atlas and Titan.

Flash forward to October 19, 2005. I find myself with my coworkers at Vandenberg Air Base, standing outside a building in which I had worked for almost 10 of the last 23 years. Once again, I am gazing skyward at an awesome launch vehicle with a powerful name—Titan IV B-26. This time, however, there are at least two significant differences. It is the last time I will ever see a Titan Space Launch Vehicle rising majestically over the hills of this same Lompoc Valley. And this time, I no longer wonder how brilliant those people are, because I have worked with and known many of them!

As I watched B-26 climb into that crystal-clear blue sky, I felt extremely proud to be an employee of Lockheed Martin! I will miss that feeling, but I will remember it as long as I live. Thank you Titan team and thank you Lockheed Martin! Farewell, good luck and Godspeed to all who made you fly!

Space Exploration Is a Wonderful, Wild Ride

I've been part of ventures that would make your head spin
by Christine M.

I began my journey with Martin Marietta working in the publications organization in 1982, about 30 years past. Proposals were our primary business, which was wonderful because we would learn about the amazing technologies being developed in defense and the space industry. The first proposal I lead was Phase I of the Space Station Endeavor. We won—which spurred future proposals for the Space Station and as we know, is currently operational. I worked on the first Apple computers the company purchased, testing its capabilities to those of the board artist, speed, accuracy and layout freedoms. Our organization was one of the first to bring in a digital presentation system that delivered high-quality imagery in slides. Personally, I used that system to create a slide presentation viewed by President Reagan's staff while he visited the Waterton facility. Over the years, being part of numerous ventures that would make a person’s mind spin, has been a constant amazement to me on how inventive our folks truly are—to see the excitement light up in their eyes when talking about projects they are working on. I have been blessed to be part of and see not only our country move forward in the space industry, but be part of keeping our people and world safe. It’s been a wild ride!

Honoring a True Hero

The Lockheed Lightning is more than a piece of historyby Douglas P.

Born in Waterloo, Iowa, in 1920, my father joined the United States Army in 1942 as a private and was commissioned later that year. He served as a fighter pilot in a P-38 for 13 months and flew 50 combat missions over Italy, Germany, Africa and the Balkans. He was also a flight commander for 30 missions, a group operations officer and a group engineering and supply officer. He completed his service as section commander over a squadron of 60 men for Western Defense of Japanese balloons.My father received several awards for his exemplary service, including the European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal with five battle stars, an air medal with 10 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Distinguished Flying Cross and a Congressional Unit Citation, also with 10 Oak Leaf Clusters. He was discharged in 1946 and died of cancer in 1979, leaving a wife of 32 years, six children and 12 grandchildren.

Photo 1: A letter from Lockheed, 1943

Photo 2: The face of exemplary service and courage

Photo 3: A hero's aircraft

Our Mission Never Wavers

Celebrating a silver anniversary at Lockheed Martin
by Jon B.

As a second-generation employee, this year marks my 25th year with Lockheed Martin. One of my most memorable moments was when then President Ronald Reagan visited the Waterton plant in Denver, Colorado, and gave a rousing speech to hundreds of employees on the second floor factory building. His words evoked such a sense of national pride of what our mission was—to protect our nation from those who wanted to harm us. Looking back on programs, such as the Titan and Defense Systems, they were key milestones for the company and the country. Now as a Lockheed Martin Space Systems facility staff architect, I continue to be so proud to support current programs, such as MSP and GPS III, that continue to protect our generation and future generations of Americans for years to come. Happy 100th Birthday Lockheed Martin!

Coming Full Circle

Proud to be part of the greatest aircraft design and development company in the world
by Jerry C.

I grew up in Lancaster, California, in the heart of the Antelope Valley, an iconic site in aviation history. From Chuck Yeager’s historic breaking of the sound barrier in “Glamorous Glennis” to the X-series aircraft (X-1 through X-15), I was a childhood witness to wondrous sights across the desert sky. My father and uncle both worked at Edwards AFB (Dryden Test Center). My dad refueled all of the experimental aircraft, and my uncle maintained the propulsion systems. It seemed like half the population worked in aviation in the 1950s and 1960s. Our windows would shake often from test aircraft breaking the sound barrier. I, too, started my 30-plus year federal career at Edwards, all focused around aviation with the Air Force at depots and eventually at the Pentagon.

My most memorable moments were catching glimpses of the SR-71 “Blackbird” – the fastest plane in the world, setting records as yet unmatched. Through my father, I was able to see one up close. The all-black paint, the design, the sleek body seemed a work of art, all accomplished by Lockheed’s inimitable “Skunk Works,” of which I read everything I could lay my hands on.

After finishing my government career, I was thrilled (and still am) to have the opportunity to come to work for Lockheed Martin and become a part of the greatest aircraft design and development company in the world. In a sense, my childhood fascination and dreams have come full circle, something my father and uncle would be proud of.

The love of aviation has been a part of my life since childhood.

In the Shadow of History

My grandmother worked in the very same building
by Christopher D.

I work in the very same building that my grandmother worked in as a drafter on a number of experimental planes during World War II. Though 50 years have passed and the building is falling apart around the small section of labs that Lockheed Martin still leases, my Grandmother is still alive and can point out the section of windows to her drafting area and the balcony attached to Larry Bell’s office where she once ate lunch with Bell who occasionally invited a handful of employees for a summer barbeque.

“My grandmother’s very much alive here.”

It’s a Thrill to Do What We Do

We’re a family at Lockheed Martin
by Julia S.

Growing-up in California, as a little girl I remember seeing the "Lockheed" signage while about town with my family. And, as I grew-up the name "Lockheed—later "Lockheed Martin—was being tossed around in circles of conversation and in the media because of accomplishments in the various branches of business. Looking back I was intrigued and dreamed that I would be an employee of Lockheed Martin one day. It was 2.5 years ago that I learned of an employment opportunity with the company. I had to see for myself what they were all about because of their services and also because I was intrigued by their longevity. Today, I am thrilled I did because now I know what Lockheed Martin provides for their customers and their integrity I have observed is second-to-none. I am proud to call Lockheed my home away from home. We're family.

Lockheed Martin has been part of her life since childhood.

Constant Amazement

Space exploration continues to dazzle
by Barbara S.

I spent the first 25 years of my career at Lockheed Martin working on the Titan launch vehicle program, experiencing many highlights and quite a few challenges. My most cherished memory would be the thrill I experienced in the pre-dawn hours of October 15, 1997, when I participated on the launch team that sent the Cassini mission on the first leg of its journey to Saturn. The launch was flawless and spectacular, lighting up the Space Coast on that warm, starry night. Our job for the Titan booster and Centaur upper stage was over in less than 50 minutes, but the Cassini spacecraft, after finally arriving at the ringed planet in July 2004, continues to amaze the scientific world with its discoveries. I love to share its story and the stories of other great exploration programs with school groups and the public through my volunteer work with the NASA/JPL Solar System Ambassador program. That's why I work in this business.

Elegance in Innovation

Ground-breaking creativity on two fronts
by Carla E.

In 1982, my second year at Lockheed, I joined a team that was building a logical model of the entire FBM program. This itself was a ground-breaking activity.

But when we finished, it was all pen on paper. How on earth could we publish drawings when no one had yet invented PowerPoint? We didn't even have a rudimentary word processer in those days.

My first year here I spent supporting the FBM engineering designers who used CADAM, the Lockheed-created automated design tool. So when it was time to publish our 550 models of the FBM business, I suggested we get funding for a team of engineers to come in on two weekends and use CADAM to draw our models. Then we could print them out on paper and bind them into a book.

We did just that. My lead presented a copy of our book to the IBM scientist who organized GUIDE, the international conference on data relationships. He pronounced it 'elegant'. I was thrilled to have played a part in pushing the envelope on two different fronts: building the entity model and figuring out how to publish it.

At Lockheed Martin, we celebrate technology! 

Aviation Etched in Memories

Three of four daughters have flying in their DNA
by Ann W.

Since I can remember, I have been flying in airplanes. My father, Stephen C. Richard, owned an L18-56 Lockheed Loadstar for about 20 years. It was built around 1942, originally for the military; then owned by a private corporation for the former Secretary of State, George Shultz. The N96334 World War II passenger transport aircraft is still etched in my memory. My father never let me forget what I said as a child as we flew to Florida, “Dad, Why are the clouds down there? Are we upside down?” To this day, I still marvel and identify with the sound of radial engines overhead. I continue on the tradition of taking our three sons flying so perhaps one day they will be aviators or engineers like their parents or grandparents. My father was proud to have three of his four daughters associated with aircraft; Stephanie Gray, who pilots the MD-80 for American Airlines; Lisa Dudzinski, who was the first pilot of the family; and last but not least, the one who joined the Lockheed Martin team as an engineer.

Counting the Years

Our history is truly impressive
by Larry N.

In the early 1990s, General Electric (founded in 1892, 120 years ago) purchased the RCA Corporation (founded in 1919, 93 years ago and originally a split-off of GE). GE Aerospace, the combination of GE Space and RCA Aero-Astro, was sold in the mid-1990s to Martin Marietta, which subsequently merged with Lockheed Martin. As such, the Lockheed Martin Space Systems Company (SSC), in effect, is celebrating its 120th birthday this year.

A Job Well Done

Proud to support the warfighter at 85
by Eugene V.

During World War II, I was trained as a combat aircrewman (aviation ordnanceman, gunner and radar operator) and assigned to a crew of a Martin Mariner (PBM), one of a twelve-man crew: three officers and nine enlisted. Never got into combat, but ended up in the Philippines flying air-sea rescue operations and patrols around the Philippine Islands. I joined Lockheed Martin in 2009, after retiring from civilian service in the Office of the Secretary of the Army (1997). Presently, I am 85 years old.

A Matter of Trust

Striving for the best in what really matters
by Barton W.

At night, when things are quiet, I frequently think about the trust that our nation has granted me through my association with Lockheed—to be privy to and trusted with its most sensitive secrets and above all else, to never forget what that really represents. We become accustomed and sometimes blasé about this after a while in the rush of our daily lives, but then I realize how special this trust really is. And how much it sets us aside from everyone else who could never imagine the richness this brings to our lives and how unique Lockheed and its people really are. What drives me? To never do less than the best that can be done, whatever it takes.

A Sight to See

An incredible take off and landing
by D. Hurst

I was stationed with the 1st Marine Division at Camp Hansen in 1984-1985. I had my son with me on this tour. From our little apartment, we could oversee the end of the runway at Kadena AFB. We would keep watch for the KC-135 tanker with the four crosses on the tail (signifying the 96th Strategic Recon Wing). That meant the Lockheed Martin SR-71A Blackbird could not be far behind. What a sight it was to see that bird take off and land. Unforgettable.

Chasing the Blackbird

Happy to be part of the company that ensures our nation’s defense
by Rick D.

My Lockheed Martin story starts as a little kid; I went to a Beale AFB open house with my family. I spotted the Blackbird, and I instantly fell in love. I enlisted in the Air Force as a jet engine mechanic. My first duty station was Beale AFB; I was only able to get close to the aircraft I loved. I was at the retirement ceremony for the Blackbird and got to hear and feel the sonic boom right over us. I was also part of the crew that delivered the Blackbird for the Air Force Museum.

My next duty station was Kadena AB. Once again I was where the Blackbird had been. I had my first experience dealing with Lockheed Martin personnel. A team came out to refurbish our T-10 Hush Houses. These great guys impressed me with their skill and craftsmanship. Next, off to HAFB, where I worked on and fell in love with the F-16. I was deployed many times to exotic places, and always felt secure we had our birds there that would go out hunting and get some.

Off to England, RAF Lakenheath, once again the Blackbird had been right down the street. I feel like I chased the Blackbird all over the world, even if it was after it retired. Now I am a Lockheed Martin employee, I am happy to be part of the company that will see our country’s defense will be well prepared for whatever comes our way in the future.

A Love and Obsession with Aircraft

Lockheed Martin has been part of this family for over 70 years
by Lewis M.

My father's love and obsession with Lockheed aircraft began in the late 1930s when he was hired by Mid-Continent Airlines and checked out on the Lockeed-10 Electra. During this period, he met fellow Mid-Continent pilot Tony Levier (later a Lockheed test pilot) and forged a friendship that would last almost 50 years. In 1946, at the urging of Tony Levier, Dad purchased a Lockheed P-38 from War Assets for $1,250 and immediately outfitted it for racing. He successfully crossed the finish line of the 1946 Bendix Trophy Race, even after passing out due to oxygen equipment failure and flying off course for 20 minutes.

In 1950, just before his wedding day, Tony Levier offered Dad a test pilot job with Lockheed. For whatever reason, Dad chose an airline career instead. Prior to ushering in the Jet Age, Dad had many hours in the Lockheed Super Constellation and the Lockheed L-88 Electra. One of Dad's best experiences was an invite by Tony Levier to visit in California and tour the mock-up of the SST L-2000. 

Lockheed Martin remains in our family, as my wife Jody enters her 39th year with the company. Dad never got to meet her, if he had, conversation around the dinner table would have been exciting. Happy 100th to Lockheed Martin!

My love and obsession with Lockheed Martin aircraft began early. 

P-3 Orion Legacy

Working at Lockheed Martin offers intangibles no other company can offer
by Bo E.

I grew up a Navy kid living around P-3s most of my childhood. My dad worked as a tactical officer on P-3s, and I've always had a soft spot for “his” plane. This was in the days of the Cold War, and while I didn’t get the implications at the time, I remember thinking that the P-3 was a great plane and how it always brought my dad home safe and sound. I liked the plane so much that I would search high and low at shops for models and toys of P-3s, but they were always hard to find. Although, once I found a kit that had the stickers for one of the squadrons my dad served in. That was the centerpiece of my collection.

Having gone on to work at the company that makes the P-3 has always been one of the intangible parts of working for Lockheed Martin. It generates a sense of pride no other company can offer. Few other jobs would have given me the chance to get near P-3s in the course of work.

"I've always had a soft spot for Dad's plane."  

Great Expectations Fulfilled

Proud to work for a company that stands by our nation’s warfighters
by Ramona W.

I am a second generation Lockheed Martin employee, with 31 years of service.

Growing up, I knew that my father’s career with (then) Lockheed Missiles and Space provided a good living for our family, and I saw that he had many opportunities to do different things.

In 31 years of service, I’ve had the opportunity to work in a half dozen or more different types of environments, in three different locations in the United States, with hundreds of different people. I’ve held both hourly and salaried positions; I’ve had jobs I’ve loved and jobs I’ve liked. (I’ve been fortunate, I guess, in that I’ve never hated any of my jobs here.) I’ve had good and bad management, but the good has far outweighed the bad. I’ve watched various portions of the company go through massive downsizing; I’ve been laid off once, but that lasted only four months. I’ve seen hiring booms that made my head spin. I’ve gone from working in a department that had a few “dumb terminals” that were for the entire department, to a PC on every desk.

I’ve worked on Trident II D5 FBM, THAAD and SBIRS, and I’m proud to know that I’m working for a company that provides (among other things) products and services that help the warfighter.
On my first day of employment in Central Keypunch in 1980, I never would have thought I would still be with Lockheed Martin 31 years later, and yet here I am. And I’m glad.

Friday, August 10, 2012

A Witness to Technological Innovation

Lockheed Martin has been my first and only job since 1965
by Pat P.

I’ve worked at Lockheed Martin since 1965. It was my first and only job – I was 19 years old. It has been my “other home” and I have seen so many changes! I started out in what was called the Tech Pubs department in Huntsville. We all typed on an IBM Executive Typewriter that had interchangeable keys, which meant that when we typed equations, we had to change the keys manually. Once I got the hang of it, things went pretty fast. In 1977, our typewriters were serviced by Louis Matthews, who later came to work at Lockheed Martin in 1996 and, like me, is still working here!

I was at work when the Space Shuttle Challenger fell from the sky – I’ll remember that sad day forever. And I was at work on Sept. 11 and we watched it unfold on television with disbelief and horror. Those were the sad days but most days I look back on were just terrific. I have met so many wonderful people and have made such good friends over these years.

Pat busy at work on the IBM Executive Typewriter.

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Looking Back Over 100 Years

A Glenn L. Martin historian uncovers his connection to the past 
by Roger M.

I’ve been an avid historian of the Glenn L. Martin Company since the early 1980s, but I never realized my own link to the company, which came by chance many years after I was hired. My grandfather, Lawrence Mason, worked for the company beginning in 1920 while the business was still in Cleveland. When Martin moved to Baltimore in 1928, my grandfather moved with them, along with about 1,000 employees. (My father was the firstborn of five and two years old at the time. Thus, my very existence is indirectly linked to Glenn L. Martin.) My grandfather worked in shipping, the experimental department and as a welder. He even worked on Martin’s Stutz Bearcat. He retired in the late 1950s and eventually passed away in 1974. After my grandmother died, my father and I went to her house to help clean things out. There I discovered piles of old photos during Granddad’s years at Martin, many dating back to the 1920s. He also kept all of his merit pins, badges and ID cards. I was amazed. My father gave me everything and I have since turned over these artifacts to the Glenn L. Martin Museum, except for one item – a photo taken in 1945 of Granddad receiving his 25-year pin from Glenn Martin. The photo was signed by Martin and reads, “To Larry Mason – In appreciation of 25 years of cordial relationship.” I keep the photo at my desk, next to my own 25-year service pin.

Photo: My granddad, Larry Mason, is in the center. Harry Rowland, Vice President, is to the left and Glenn L. Martin is to the right.

An Amazing Life

As did so many young men, Dad risked his life with bravery and honor 
by Deborah B.

My dad accomplished many things in his 91 years. He was an Eagle Scout, enrolled in Civilian Pilot Training in high school and college, played for the Detroit Red Wings professional hockey team and was an executive at BBDO, as one of the original “Mad Men.” But he was most proud of his role as husband, father and Naval Aviator. Dad flew the Martin PBM Mariner, the flying boat of World War II.

Dad enlisted after junior college. He had as many flying hours as his instructors at New Orleans and Pensacola, and finished two-and-a-half months ahead of the rest of his Pensacola class. He was assigned to Patrol Bombing 208 on convoy and anti-submarine duty. Then Dad spent four years based in the Pacific. He was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for a dumbo rescue and eight Air Medals for service in war areas, including Kwajalein, Eniwetok, Saipan, Iwo Jima and Okinawa.

Decades later, Dad rarely spoke of the war, but he speak of his love of the PBM. He once shared, “The PBM was a wonderfully rugged aircraft because we operated from extremely rough water, including the open sea." 

In 2010, Dad was escorted to Washington, D.C. by the Volusia Honor Air. At long last, he was able to visit the World War II Memorial. He was delighted his service was remembered.

He was humble, so typical of the Greatest Generation. It was always about “us” with my dad. He never spoke about his medals and passed away with those secrets. But in my heart I know a hero is in heaven.

Photo 1: Clark S. Slayman, USN

Photo 2: LT Slayman and PBM Crew (back row, fifth from left)

Photo 3: LT Slayman and Squadron (front row, fifth from left)