Bradford Runyon Interview, 25 February 2005

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BRNo I don’t, but I thought that one of the navigators, and Pat said it wasn’t him, so it could have been Chuck Ritchey—the way they raised their voice, I thought that they thought that a collision was imminent. And then it stopped dead without hitting us.
TTAnd you still couldn’t see anything? Were you still trying to look out there?
BRWell, I don’t know, maybe I was thinking about ejecting really (laughs).
TTWell, plus you’re flying the plane without communication capability so I imagine you were little concerned.
BRYeah, but as far as the other crew’s positions were concerned, yeah, I think they could monitor all the radios also. And we had a selector if you wanted to transmit on a certain radio, then you select that radio, two different UHF radios and an HF radio.
TTAh, so you could switch between them.
BRUh huh, but I believe all the positions could probably monitor them all at the same time also.
TTThen there’s an HF onboard too?
BRYeah, high frequency that we can—we’re over the North Pole we can talk to our headquarters with that radio, yeah.
TTBut I understand that’s in the EW’s position?
BRWell, he monitored it most of the time because as the co-pilot I was having to talk on the two UHF radios, and I might have two different controllers talking to me, and maybe at the same time. But when we were flying over the North Pole, why then the co-pilot monitored the HF radio. I talked on it too but in the local area the co-pilot just used the two UHF radios. And, sometimes when we were in the area we would put one on channel nine, which was the Command Post frequency if we wanted to talk to them or anything, and then the other one…
TTThe Command Post was SAC headquarters?
BRNo it was separate, just our local—
TTBomb Wing?
BR—headquarters.Yeah. So if we were on alert we probably had both radios on channel nine then so we could get our messages from the Command Post. But in this case I had at least one radio, if not both of them on the Ground Controller’s, or the Approach Control, radar people’s frequency.
TTAnd you must have tried to change frequency because you could hear them, right?
BRRight.
TTWere they giving you other frequencies to switch to?
BRYes they did after awhile. At first they just told us if we could read them to Squawk Ident. So, you know, the aircraft commander just hits a button and we already had a certain code set in. So it just flashes on their radar.

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