• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Cover
 Interview






DARK ITEM
Lt. Col. William Kaufman
CITATION
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00007775/00001
 Material Information
Title: Lt. Col. William Kaufman
Physical Description: Book
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
System ID: UF00007775:00001

Table of Contents
    Cover
        Cover
    Interview
        Page 1
        Page 2
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
        Page 19
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
        Page 24
        Page 25
        Page 26
        Page 27
        Page 28
        Page 29
        Page 30
        Page 31
        Page 32
        Page 33
        Page 34
        Page 35
Full Text
DIVISION OF FLORIDA HIGHWAY PATROL
50TH ANNIVERSARY ORAL HISTORY PROJECT
Interview with LT. COLONEL WILLIAM R. KAUFMAN
Employed with FHP SEPTEMBER 1, 1944
Interviewed by RUSS GARRIS
Date Interviewed MAY 15, 1989





It is May 15, 1989, in Tallahassee, Florida.
Good morning, I am Russell Garris of the Florida Highway Patrol
interviewing William R. Kaufman at his home in Tallahassee about
the 50th Anniversary of the Florida Highway Patrol for the oral
history project that we are involved in. For the record Major
Kaufman, would you please give me your full name.
WRK: William Rexford Kaufman.
RG: All right and where were you born?
WRK: Anderson, Indiana.
RG: In what year?
WRK: July 30th, 1923.
RG: Okay,
WRK: On a cold and frosty morning.
1





RG: Cold and: frosty morning, huh? In July. How long did you
live in Indiana before you came to Florida?
WRK: Six weeks.
RG: Six weeks and you moved to where in Florida?
WRK: Fort Lauderdale.
RG: And was there, why did that come about?
WRK: My folks wanted to move to Florida and my Dad went into the
real estate business and that's where we ended up.
RG: In Fort Lauderdale?
WRK: Fort Lauderdale.
RG: And you went to school in Broward County?
WRK: First through 12th grade at Fort Lauderdale High School.
RG: Fort Lauderdale High School, did you go to college or any
other?
2





WRK: Took some, was in the University of Miami for a short
period of time, that was back in the days when money was
hard to get a hold of during the depression and I dropped
out of that and I have had some short courses here and
there at FSU and at Florida Atlantic North Western I took a
short course, but I never did get a degree in anything.
RG: All right, when you dropped out of the University of Miami,
what did you do then, what was your next move?
WRK: Well, I had to get out and work so I went to work for
Warren's Laundry in Fort Lauderdale.
.RG: Okay and how long did you work for them?
WRK: Stayed there, went to work for them just before Christmas,
no just after Christmas 1941 and I stayed with them until I
went on the Patrol September 1, 1944.
RG: What made you decide to become a trooper?
WRK: Well, I don't know, I had some friends that were troopers
there, Dwight Johnson was a good friend of mine and I just
thought that might be a good occupation.
RG: Okay, back to your family again, did you have any brothers
and sisters?
3





WRK: I had one brother and one sister.
RG: And were they in Lauderdale?
WRK: They were in Fort Lauderdale. My brother has been dead for
about twenty years and my sister lives in DeLand now.
RG: So when you went on the Highway Patrol, did you go directly
on the road or did you go to school or what did you do?
WRK: I worked, trained thirty days in Fort Lauderdale, and then
I was transferred to Pahokee.
RG: Who did you train with in Fort Lauderdale, do you remember?
WRK: Al Faucett and Dwight Johnson.
RG: And you went to Pahokee?
WRK: Yes, they were the only two troopers in Lauderdale, in
Broward county at that time.
RG: After your training you went to Pahokee, did you, you were
living in Pahokee?
WRK: Right.
4





RG: And were you married at the time?
WRK: Yes, I was married, had one child.
RG: When you moved to Pahokee?
WRK: When I moved to Pahokee.
RG: What sort of rent did you have to pay there?
WRK: Twenty dollars a month for a house.
RG: Twenty dollars a month and how much money were you making
as a trooper?
WRK: One hundred fifty dollars a month.
RG: One hundred and fifty. What sort of duty did you have in
Pahokee and what area did you cover?
WRK: Well, there was one trooper in Pahokee and one trooper in
Belle Glade, but there was no trooper in Belle Glade when I
first went there. A year or so later there was but there
was one trooper in Okeechobee and one trooper in LaBelle so
when either one of the other troopers was off, you would
have a hundred or so of miles to cover for wrecks and
things like that.
5





RG: This was:in 19
WRK: Nineteen forty-four.
RG: Forty-four and the war was still on at that time. Okay,
were you ever in the service?
WRK: No, I was drafted, I listed in the Marines and was rejected
for high blood pressure, then I was drafted and rejected
because I had flat feet.
RG: Okay, so for some of the other people that had been
stationed in those areas, they were off in the service, I
guess?
WRK: At the time I went on the Patrol, the best I can remember,
we had, the Patrol had less than a hundred people working
because of the ones that had been called in the military.
RG: How long did you stay in Pahokee?
WRK: I stayed in Pahokee five years, a little over five years.
RG: Okay,
6





WRK: Let me interject something right here. When I went to
work, I don't think there were over three or four people
employed through the year of 1944 and they were all under a
temporary appointment, nobody had a permanent appointment.
RG: Because of the war?
WRK: Because of the war and somebody that would come back, they
would probably have to replace you. But that never had an
affect on me, I stayed right on.
RG: When the war ended, it never changed.
WRK: I didn't get an appointment card for almost a year which
was just an oversight on the part of the Department.
RG: Okay, since you did the thirty day training under
Lieutenant Faucett in Lauderdale and Dwight Johnson.
WRK: He was a trooper at the time, he was not a lieutenant.
RG: He was a trooper?
WRK: Right.
RG: Did you ever go to a subsequent school later on?
7





WRK: A couple:of years later, I went to a refresher school but I
never did go to a recruit school.
RG: So you never did go to a recruit school and get a
WRK: The Department never didn't realize that until just very
shortly before I retired.
RG: Is that right, and you never brought it to their attention.
WRK: Now down through the years, I went to a lot of them,
various schools but no recruit school.
RG: Yes, a lot of refresher schools and other things. Were you
promoted, when were you promoted to corporal?
WRK: July 1, 1947.
RG: Where were you then?
WRK: In Pahokee.
RG: Were you moved?
8





WRK: No, the 47th Session of the Legislature established four
corporal ratings and we had a radio station in Pahokee and
they needed somebody to sweep the floors, so they promoted
me to a corporal which got you $15 a month more.
RG: Fifteen dollars a month. When was the station build in
Pahokee. Was it there when you went there or later on?
WRK: Well, when I first went to Pahokee, the radio station was
in Belle Glade and it was operated by the Everglades Fire
Control. The radio equipment belonged to the Patrol but
the Everglades Fire Control furnished office space and
furnished the radio operators and they also operated their
trucks on our frequency. Then maybe a year or year and a
half later, they moved the station to Pahokee, build a
radio tower right there on the dyke and put the station
there in the city hall which was just adjacent to the dyke.
RG: And that was actually owned by the Patrol then?
WRK: No, it was owned by the city of Pahokee.
RG: Okay,
WRK: The station was built in Pahokee in 1951 I think.
9





RG: Fifty-one?
WRK: Or. 52 along then, Colonel Simmons was lieutenant at the
time and he was moved from West Palm to Pahokee to be the
district boss at the time.
RG: Okay, and how long did you stay in Pahokee as a corporal?
WRK: Well, I was there until October 1, 1949.
RG: And then where?
WRK: And then I was promoted to sergeant and moved to West Palm
Beach.
RG: And West Palm Beach, what territory did you have?
WRK: With the exception of Broward county, the sergeant's area
was then the same as Troop L territory of five counties.
RG: Five counties, the same as it is now for them.
WRK: Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River and Okeechobee.
RG: And that was 1949?
WRK: October 1st, 49.
10





RG: And how many people did you have to take care of and
supervise?
WRK: We had two troopers in West Palm, had one in Martin county
and one in St. Lucie county and one in Indian River and one
in Okeechobee, one on the Lake, two on the Lake.
RG: Then at that time, you moved back to West Palm, you moved
from Pahokee to West Palm, your family and all and what
sort of place did you find then, was it
WRK: I bought a house.
RG: You bought a house?
WRK: I bought a house before I left Pahokee.
RG: In Pahokee?
WRK: Yes, went from $20 a month to $45 a month and I just never
knew how I was going to make that house payment.
RG: And then when you went to West Palm?
WRK: I bought a house and it was $70 a month and I thought that
was a terrific payment.
11





RG: Oh yes and your pay didn't go up very much?
WRK: I don't remember what it was but at that time, the biggest
pay raise was between corporal and sergeant which was about
$40 a month as I remember. So I got a pretty reasonable
pay raise.
RG: Okay, so you were the supervisor and the sergeant in West
Palm Beach in 49 through about when?
WRK: October 15 of 51 when I was transferred to Fort Myers.
RG: And you had what area in Fort Myers then?
WRK: Well, I had the Fort Myers district which was composed of
Charlotte, Lee, Collier, Hendry, Glades, and part of the
time Highlands and DeSoto.
RG: Later on when it changed?
WRK: Right.
RG: Approximately how many people, you don't have to remember
exactly how many, but about how many?
WRK: Well, we had one in each county.
12





RG: One in each county?
WRK: I think we maybe had three in Fort Myers.
RG: Who was the person in charge of the Fort Myers station?
WRK: When I first went over there, Lieutenant Mack G. Britt
RG: And then
WRK: Then Colonel Simmons came as a lieutenant. It seemed like
he followed me everywhere I went, I don't know whether he
was sweeping my tracks or what he was doing. He came over
there shortly after I did.
RG: Okay, and then approximately how long did you stay there?
WRK: Well, I stayed there until January 14, 1957, when I
transferred to West Palm Beach on the Turnpike.
RG: Okay, and you bought a house in Fort Myers too, is that
right?
WRK: Yes, I built a house in Fort Myers.
RG: It was probably more than the one you had in West Palm.
13





WRK: Oh yes, everything gets higher you know.
RG: Each year.
WRK: I don't remember just what the payment was but it was more
than the West Palm house.
RG: Okay.
WRK: I rented a house a couple of years in Fort Myers before I
built the house.
RG: Okay, who else was stationed in Fort Myers at that time
that it was Lieutenant Mack Britt and who else?
WRK: Then Simmons came in, trying to think of some of the
people, Les Sutton who retired as a lieutenant, R. B.
Garris,
RG: Later on,
WRK: Later on retired as a captain. We had this mexican called
Travis Linscomb
RG: He was there for awhile, quite a few of them moved in and
out.
14





WRK: Bill Payne, Murray Thomas who has been dead for many years,
RG: Then you transferred over to the Turnpike in what capacity,
were you still a sergeant?
WRK: Sergeant.
RG: And that was the beginning of the Florida Turnpike?
WRK: That was before it opened. It opened two or three weeks
after that.
RG: And you lived back in what area then?
WRK: West Palm Beach.
RG: In West Palm, so you were right back where you were before?
WRK: I rented a house for a couple of years, then in 1959, I
built a house.
RG: And you stayed on the Turnpike and progressed through the
WRK: Through the rank of captain.
RG: All right, you were also a first sergeant on the Turnpike
and a lieutenant.
15





WRK: First sergeant, lieutenant and a captain. I made captain
on February 1, 1962, stayed there until March 1, 1972, at
which time I came to Tallahassee, promoted to major and
came to Tallahassee.
RG: Okay, the opening day on the Turnpike, you had a lot to get
ready for that day, I guess. You remember anything about
the opening day on the Turnpike.
WRK: Well, we had a lot of unnecessary fanfare I thought but
that wasn't my business to think, but they had an opening
ceremony and a ribbon cutting, at least one exit in every
county through entire route of the Turnpike, and Governor
Collins came down and a lot of the dignitaries, it was
quite a day.
RG: Did you go with the whole procession or were you at
WRK: I was running back and forth to see that everything was in
ship shape. At that time, the pike was only 108.2 miles
long from Miami to Fort Pierce and I just kind of cruised
around to see that everything was in order and going
proper.
RG: Later on when you were troop commander of Troop K, the
Turnpike Troop, did that involve any extra or different
duties than you normally would have as a trooper?
16





WRK: I was a member of the Turnpike Authority Staff and I was
also given the assignment as Safety Director of the
Turnpike Authority which made me oversee over all the
construction areas and various things. But we had many
duties that they don't have off the road as far as the
securities of toll funds, policing the service areas,
restaurants and filling stations on the service areas and
policing the customer service from the service areas to
keep the concessionaries from robbing the customers, and
seeing that the customers got value received.
RG: By your involvement as a troop commander and also as Safety
Director of the Turnpike, did you have to go out-of-state
to other meetings and things, and to other Turnpike
operations to see how they did?
WRK: Right.
RG: Then you made major and came to Tallahassee and what area
of the state did you have then?
WRK: When I first came up here, I had what they called the
Northern Region, which was everything from Orlando county
line, north Orange county line northward and in West
Florida. Then after I was here for awhile, I swapped
17





territories and I had the Southern Region and then I think
I had each one of them about twice before I left the
Patrol.
RG: Okay, who, whenever you first came on the Patrol, who was
the director of the Highway Patrol at that time?
WRK: Jess Gilliam.
RG: And he stayed director for some time?
WRK: Until Colonel Kirkman got back out of the service.
RG: And then he left.
WRK: Senator Holland was governor and he had appointed Jess
Gilliam as director of the Patrol and when Millard Caldwell
came in, Colonel Kirkman came back out of the service,
Governor Caldwell made Kirkman director of the Patrol. He
stayed there until about 1970. I worked for him about 25
years I think.
RG: When you were in Fort Myers as a buck sergeant, did you
ever write a letter one time saying that you wanted to be
considered for promotion?
WRK: Did I?
18





RG: Yes.
WRK: Probably did, I don't remember for sure.
RG: I think you did and the Colonel wrote you back and said
you'd be considered when the time came.
WRK: I'm sure he considered me when he signed his name and
forgot about it. I shouldn't say that because he did treat
me great.
RG: He did? When you were in Tallahassee when you first came
up here, that was approximately what year as a major?
WRK: It was April 1, 1972.
RG: 1972, so then there had been Colonel Kirkman was gone
WRK: Two years.
RG: In the interim time there was a Director Reid Clifton.
WRK: Colonel Kirkman left February 19, 1970, and Colonel Clifton
was Director and Colonel Clifton had promoted me to major
the year before, almost a year before I came up here
predicated on Chuck Reynolds retiring. Chuck never did
19





retire so I didn't come up actually until Colonel Clifton
retired and that made an opening up the line and I came up
at that time.
RG: And the director at that time was
WRK: Colonel Beach.
RG: And you served as a major in the Tallahassee area and the
half of the state and switched back and forth until about
what time?
WRK: Until November 2, 1980,
RG: And then you became,
WRK: At which time I transferred out of the uniform division to
the Division of Administrative Services as Director of the
Division of Administrative Services.
RG: And you continued in that capacity until
WRK: Until I retired March 1, 1985.
RG: Looking back over your career with the Patrol, what
outstanding things can you remember from the start right on
through, any particular area that you
20





WRK: I don't think so. I know back in those days, we did a lot
more, more criminal work than they do now. Mainly because
you were the only law enforcement officer in the area. I
know down around the Lake, the minorities always called you
an outlaw because you were the law out of town.
RG: An outlaw huh?
WRK: We did a lot more criminal work then than we do now.
RG: And you helped the deputies and the sheriff
WRK: In those times you didn't have a deputy
RG: And you had to do his work.
WRK: Jack Baker was the sheriff of Palm Beach county when I went
to Pahokee and he had only one deputy in all of western
Palm Beach county. That poor guy didn't know which end was
up you know he was so busy. Many times you would have to
do their work.
RG: Okay, then when you went to Fort Myers, the situation was
similar to that, Snag Thompson was the sheriff there I
guess.
21





WRK: Snag Thompson who was a former FHP sergeant and I worked
for Snag, he was my sergeant in West Palm Beach for three
or. four years and then he ran for sheriff in Lee county
which was his home and he was elected. He was sheriff when
I went to Lee county in 51.
RG: Okay, where of the areas that you were stationed, did you
enjoy and like to be stationed the most?
WRK: I think as far as the living conditions were concerned, I
think Fort Myers was probably the best town I was ever in.
RG: Really, you liked it there better.
WRK: Yes, I liked Tallahassee also but of course, Fort Myers was
much smaller then and there was only probably 12 to 13,000
people and I guess it's a couple of hundred thousand now,
it was a nice town in those days.
RG: Okay as far as the working area, in any capacity that you
served in, which area do you think you liked the best?
WRK: I'v never been in an area that I didn't like to work in.
I'v just had good luck I guess, I don't know but I liked
them all.
22





RG: Okay, the uniforms back when you started, can you describe
what they were when you first came on?
WRK: Well, we had about three uniforms. We had green trousers
with a black stripe on side and a green shirt that we wore
weekdays.
RG: You just wore it during the week?
WRK: Right.
.RG: Okay.
WRK: Saturdays, we had what you'd call a pink, which is pretty
similar to what we have now, with trousers. Sunday, we
wore the pink shirt with riding britches and boots.
RG: Even if you had a car?
WRK: Yes. So before you get dressed you'd better see what day
it was, or you would be out of uniform.
RG: So what they were actually doing was switching over
probably and they used up the green uniforms
WRK: No we did that for a long time. That was the uniform.
23





RG: But on Saturday and Sunday they wanted a different uniform?
WRK: We. had a blouse, a long blouse with the same brown belt
that you had to wear on Sunday, on dress occasions, and we
had a lot of motorcycles.
RG: Were you ever assigned a motorcycle?
WRK: Yes, in fact, I had the last motorcycle in what we used to
call the Southern Division and I rode it after I'd gone to
West Palm Beach as sergeant it was assigned to me. I had a
car and a motor. We just used the motor for parades,
escorts, etc. I rode it to Miami and turned it in when we
got rid of all the motors in the state somewhere between
1949 and 1951.
RG: But when you went to Pahokee as a rookie trooper, you had a
motor or a car?
WRK: No, I had a car.
RG: A car?
24





WRK: Roads were too bad out there for motorcycles at that time.
They used motorcycles for disciplining a trooper. If he
had a wreck and it was his fault, then they put him on a
motorcycle for two weeks or a month. I never will forget
Joe Cook had a wreck out there and Tobe Bass put him on a
motorcycle and he looked like a whooping crane coming down
the road riding that motorcycle.
RG: Is that right? Was he skinny then or what?
WRK: Oh yes, he was skinny, all legs, split up to his adam's
apple. He was a sport.
RG: Okay, back whenever you were in West Palm, some of those
people were stationed there, weren't they, Cook and
WRK: Yes, Cook was there, he was in Belle Glade and he left
there and went to Homestead for awhile and I had gone to
West Palm and he came back up to West Palm and he was in
West Palm when I went to Fort Myers.
RG: What sort of hat did you have to wear during the week with
that green uniform?
WRK: We wore a billed cap, green cap with the green uniform and
a pink cap with the pink uniform.
25





RG: When did:the Stetsons come in?
WRK: You know, I can't remember.
RG: But you first didn't have them at all.
WRK: First, we had a campaign type hat.
RG: Like the New York State Police?
WRK: No, like a Yogi Bear cap, a green one and I don't remember
when we quit that.
RG: Probably just wore it in the winter or
WRK: Yes, but I can't. remember, we also had winter and summer
caps, but I can't remember when we started wearing the New
York State hats, the present hat.
RG: You say you went to Pahokee in 1944, what sort of car did
they give you.
WRK: 1941 Ford.
RG: Forty-one Ford? I'm sorry a 44. What car did you have?
WRK: The first car that I had was a 1941 Ford FHP-105.
26





RG: It was three years old then?
WRK: Yes, I guess. I kept it a couple of years. It had 180,000
miles on it when I got it, then they assigned me a 42 Ford,
five passenger coupe, they bought a bunch of those just
before they quit making cars.
RG: During the war.
WRK: This car had a few miles on it, FHP-78 was the number of
it. I drove it until the 46 Fords came out, new cars,
RG: After the war
WRK: After the war and I got, my first new car was a 46 Ford
back to FHP-117 which I drove for many long years.
RG: Okay, can you think of any other outstanding occurrences
that occurred to you and cases which may have happened
during your career that you might want to talk about.
WRK: Well, it's really nothing outstanding as far as I was
concerned but it wasn't an every day occurrence at the time
Russell Garris got shot.
RG: You mean me, huh?
27





WRK: And I don't know if you remember or not, but it happened
just about a half mile from my house
RG: That's right.
WRK: I was home eating supper when it happened. So when I got
the call it wasn't far to go and I went down there and
found you shot in the leg and I went back to this guy's
house, found, I can't remember his name, I know the kid was
Carl Smitty, no Ted Smitty.
RG: Ted Smitty. Ted Carl Smitty, his middle name was Carl.
WRK: The bad guy had escaped from the penitentiary
RG: Was Moore
WRK: I had forgotten his name. I got a photograph of him
somewhere laying up on a slab, with bullet holes in him,
and he eventually died in the hospital. Of course, you
recovered from the bullet hole, convicted Smitty. They had
been out to Fort Myers Beach, burned a house down, robbed
and burned a house down, pretty wealthy folks, burned them
up in the house. I'v got photographs of them laying up on
a slab too, terrible looking. That was an exciting time.
I don't know, I'v had some times down through the years.
28





RG: I think you captured some escaped convicts a time or to
around the unk.....
WRK: Oh yeh, I caught a lot of convicts. Lots of convicts, they
had that prison camp over near Belle Glade.
RG: Yeh. And in your tenure of the Patrol and then you went to
Administrative Services Division, did you make that
transition fine, did you enjoy that job too?
WRK: Well, I liked the job, it was kind of dead and I had some
good help so I didn't have a whole lot to do. Sit up there
and watch the world go by. Joe McCaskill was my assistant
and he took my place when I left, one of the most capable
individuals that I have ever known.
RG: Did you have a problem with all the different sections of
that division to keep them going?
WRK: Not many great problems. The most complicated one was the
Kirkman Data Center with all that computer equipment that I
didn't know beans about. Joe was who handled that so I
didn't have any problems.
RG: Major Kaufman during your career you had special
assignments to a lot of details out-of-town and also around
the state. Can you enumerate some of those?
29





WRK: Yes, we :had, of course, we had the Orange Bowl Games and
the Gasperilla in Tampa was always a detail, -had several
Governors' Conferences.
RG: And those were held in various places.
WRK: Various places ..... I've been to one in Point Clear,
Alabama, Boca Raton Club, Miami Beach, the longest detail I
ever had was on...started May 2, 1956, when I was in Fort
Myers, and stayed gone about six months on the infamous
Mediterranean fruit fly situation.
RG: You had a lot of people involved in that that you had to
supervise.
WRK: Yes, I had about 40 troopers and I think over a 100
Department of Agriculture inspectors. We had the whole
state, south end of the state, every road blockaded,
searched every vehicle that came by for fruit, vegetables,
that could be transporting the fly or larvae and as the fly
progressed north in the state, we would have to move our
road blocks and all and I think when we quit in September,
the first road block we set up was at Boca Raton and right
on across the state along the same line and we ended up
about, in September when we stopped the thing, I think it
was between Ocala and Gainesville.
30





RG: So you had each main road blockaded all away across?
WRK: And I had to visit each one of these road blocks just about
every day and I think I did every day. And I left Fort
Myers in May, May 2nd in the new 56 Ford and I think when I
got through in September that car had a hundred, I believe,
fifty or sixty thousand miles on it just from that one
detail.
RG: You had to see that those things were scheduled and you had
supervisors under you?
WRK: Schedules and see that the supervisors were doing their job
and of course, the Department of Agriculture hired a lot of
fly by night people and I think they only paid them $10 a
day so we got a lot of thugs amongst those inspectors.
RG: So you had a lot of personnel problems too?
WRK: Had a lot of theft problems. Those inspectors would have a
guy open his trunk and before it was over, they would steal
something out of his trunk.
RG: So you had to follow up those complaints.
31





WRK: Yes, had to run that stuff down. I remember we had a
sewing machine stolen in Fort Lauderdale and had a parakeet
stolen somewhere. Everyone of these people that had
something stolen would pick up the phone and call the
Governor's office.
RG: Then it would trickle back down to you.
WRK: Monumental case when you get something out of the
Governor's office.
RG: So that lasted, you said about how long?
WRK: I left Fort Myers the 2nd of May to be gone two weeks, is
what Colonel Kirkman told me when he called me, and I think
I got back home in September.
RG: And that was the only time you were involved in that or did
it ever occur again later on?
WRK: They had some more fruit fly occurrences but they never
used the roadblocks.
RG: Never did. I think that all during your career you were
also a member of the IACP and you went to those
conferences.
32





WRK: Yes, in fact I'm going up there the first week in June,
this coming June to Wrightsville, North Carolina,
Wrightsville Beach.
RG: You still stay involved in that?
WRK: Yes, I'm a life member, I think the other day I think I was
there about 28 years before I retired.
RG: Back to the fruit fly thing, did you, you had quite a
number of people assigned to you and did those alternate or
did
WRK: Yes, we kept them a month at a time.
RG: A month at a time, so you have to plan to stay.
WRK: Some of them wanted to stay, we had several that wanted to
stay because they were drawing that fabulous, I think $7 a
day per diem at the time.
RG: $7 a day. Okay, is there anything else you would like to
add.
WRK: Russell, I don't think I can, I can't think right off hand.
33





RG: Okay, if:we think of anything else, we can come back and do
another tape later. I know that I've enjoyed it and I'm
sure that you have and the present Director Burkett
appreciates you being able to participate in the program
and we look forward to seeing you at anything we have for
the 50th Anniversary. We haven't quite made plans for
everything yet but when we do, we'll certainly let you
know.
WRK: I've a comment about Bobby Burkett. I recruited Bobby.
Bobby was pumping gas at an Amoco station in Fort Myers.
RG: And you were a sergeant there?
WRK: When I was over there and I hired him as a driver license
examiner and he later on came on the Patrol and worked his
way up to the top. I also recruited Roger Collar, who
become deputy director of the Patrol.
RG: When you were in West Palm?
WRK: Right.
34
L _________________________________________





RG: So you recruited, well actually they promoted Colonel
Collar to colonel before he left, so you recruited two
colonels.
WRK: Right and they promoted me to lieutenant colonel.
RG: When you retired?
WRK: You still call me major.
RG: I'm sorry.
WRK: That's all right, I don't get any more pay. I'll tell you
that was a great career and if I had it to do all over
again, I'd do it in a minute, do it in a minute.
RG: Okay, I know I worked for you when you were a sergeant and
a lieutenant and I enjoyed every minute of it.
WRK: We had some bad times, had some good times.
RG: Okay, thank you very much.
35





University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2011 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated May 24, 2011 - Version 3.0.0 - mvs