Hometown Heroes - Dwight Bertrand

Retired Air Force Colonel teaching at McNeese
Retired AF colonel teaches agriculture at McNeese
Retired AF colonel teaches agriculture at McNeese(McNeese State University)
Published: Mar. 3, 2022 at 5:08 AM CST
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Lake Charles, LA (KPLC) - A retired Air Force Colonel is still using his talents to teach others.  Dwight Bertrand is a Hometown hero to many of his agriculture students at McNeese State University. Bertrand had a distinguished career in the United States Air Force.  His specialty was in nuclear weaponry.

“Vietnam was going on and my father, who was a World War 2 veteran, insisted that I serve,” recalled Bertrand. “It was during the cold war. For the bulk of my career, my expertise has been in nuclear weapons. The Titan II actually had the largest nuclear warhead the U.S. ever made.”

He was a navigator on board a B-52 bomber in the late stages of the Vietnam War.

“You don’t want to use a Toyota Corolla as a weapon, but if you did, you could fit 22 of them in the bomb bay of a B-52. It takes 2 miles of runway to take off.”

After retiring from the Air Force, Bertrand came to McNeese State University, serving in several areas.  He landed in agriculture and has been teaching here at the McNeese Farm ever since.

“It helps keep me young. People say what they want, but I am confident of our future generation. They’re the leadership that we’re developing. To be able to help them and mentor them, I enjoy that.”

Bertrand had a 25-year career in the U.S. Air Force.

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