Rick Bungart
RRAD employee Rick Bungart celebrates 50 years of civil service.

Richard 'Rick' Bungart has been on a "fun ride" for 50 years. This past year he celebrated 50 years of civil service. His friends and co-workers surprised him with a reception in his honor.

Bungart's career started with a two year stint in the Navy right out of high school. Following that he was asked to help out a fellow by taking a 'temporary' job at Fort Chaffee as a heating equipment mechanic.

Over the next few years he worked at Fort Bliss and Fort Walters, Texas, until he had the opportunity to transfer to Red River during the Thanksgiving holidays of 1973 as a WG-9 Plumber.

"If it had been daylight when we reached Ft. Bliss, at El Paso we wouldn't have stayed. Coming from the Ozarks to barren terrain was a shocker! But, we were glad to have a job," said Bungart.

His career path continued at Red River as he performed as a heating equipment mechanic, estimator and planner and finally as a supervisor. All of his work experience has been related to the facilities/public works functions.

The first thing Bungart thinks about when recalling his working years is the security it has offered him and his family.

Bungart said, "I have never missed a paycheck in the 48 years I have worked for civil service. I feel like I am the luckiest person out here. I came with a high school diploma and have done well. I couldn't have done it without everybody and the good support I have had."

Bungart remembers the numerous changes he has seen in his 50 years with the government and says that merging organizations and the organizational changes as a result of BRAC are the biggest changes he remembers.

Bungart has seen 18 commanders come and go. Smiling and reminiscing, he remembers once when Col. Wieland was at RRAD and he had to go to their home to work on something. He accidently let Ms Wieland's three-legged cat loose in the attic!

"She made me find that cat before I tried to leave, and you better believe I did!" said Bungart.

"My words of advice to others at RRAD are to be appreciative of the opportunity to work here. Treat fellow workers with respect because you need their support to succeed," said Bungart.

When talking, Bungart grinned and said that when people find out he has 50 years of service they often ask why he hasn't retired.

"I like my job,' said Bungart.

"It's a fun ride!"

Page last updated Fri July 22nd, 2011 at 12:16