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Mr. John R. Fitzgerald,
Chief of the U.S. Charts Section of the Aeronautical Charts Branch, is retiring from the Service on January 30, 1954. Mr. Fitzgerald entered this Bureau in May 1927 and compiled the Bureau’s first aeronautical chart while assigned to the Airway Mapping Section, which was then being organized. Since that time he has been with the aeronautical charts continuously. His previous government service started in 1918 with the Engineer Reproduction Plant, U.S. Army Engineer Corps, where, in 1922, he as assigned the duties of the compilation of air navigation maps.

When the aeronautical charting organization was started in 1927 only a few employees were engaged in the work. Since that time the expanding needs of civil and military aviation have forced the growth of the old Airway Mapping Section into the present Aeronautical Chart Branch, comprising four sections with approximately 150 employees of which the U.S. Charts Section alone has 50.

The growth of aviation and the development of new aids to air navigation since 1927 have led to many changes in the appearance of the charts. Beginning with the airway strip map series (now grown to the Flight Chart) other series of charts were soon to follow as the demand arose. Sectional, World, Local, Direction Finding, Route, Planning, Radio Facility, Instrument Approach and Landing and other miscellaneous charts were produced under his direction.

Three other sections which are now a part of this Branch had their origin and were developed under his direction. They are the Air Navigation Facilities, Instrument Approach and Landing, and the Special Charts Sections.

The continually changing requirements of aviation in the past 26 years have presented many unusual charting problems which have been successfully met by Mr. Fitzgerald during his long and faithful service. He has kept himself abreast of new aviation developments and has always been alert to opportunities for improvement of aeronautical charts.

Inasmuch as charts are one of the chief contributions to flight safety, Mr. Fitzgerald has played a very important part in the increasing security of air traffic.

In: “The Buzzard,” January 26, 1954. P. 2.

Publication of the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), NOAA Central Library.

Last Updated: June 8, 2006 9:24 AM

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