Aviation Memorabilia Newsletter Since 1995

Aviation Memorabilia Newsletter

Since 1995

Alan RustUS Diplomat Was Investigated for Spying as a Kid Because He Kept Writing Boeing Asking for Photos

(Found at www.flightaware.com)

Note: Since I know that many of our readers are aviation enthusiasts or more bluntly put "aviation nuts" , I thought you may be able to relate to this story.

By most standards, Robert F. Dorr lived the most all-American, patriotic life anyone possibly could. He served in the Air Force, he was a diplomat with the State Department from the 1960s to the 1980s, and he went on to be a successful author and TV pundit about military affairs. But as a teenager, Dorr was investigated by the FBI for potential espionage. His crime? He kept writing to Boeing asking for photos of their planes.

Dorr died in June 2016 from a brain tumor at the age of 76, and will be remembered for his writings on military history. But his newly released FBI file, obtained by Gizmodo through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, is actually quite humorous in retrospect, given his interests. Back in the 1950s, when he was still just a kid, the Pentagon and the FBI were concerned that he might be a spy.

When he was 14 years old, Dorr wrote multiple letters to companies like Boeing, asking for 8x10 glossy photos of their latest planes (see letter below). His devotion was like that of a fan enamoured with his favorite singer. But the FBI was alerted to this unusual activity and opened an investigation.

For the full story please click here.

Robert Dorr Letter

Robert F. Dorr AH 1W Oct 2003

Robert Dorr in 2003