Dr. Robert Bartlett Speaks about 'The Triple Nickels' at Richlan - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Dr. Robert Bartlett Speaks about 'The Triple Nickels' at Richland Library

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RICHLAND, WA -The 555th Parachute Infantry Battalion was an all-black airborne unit of the United States Army during World War II. Doctor Robert Bartlett spoke Thursday night at the Richland Public Library about his father, Walter Bartlett, and others in "The Triple Nickles", who worked as paratroopers and firefighters in Washington State and the Pacific Northwest during the 1940's. 

Members of "The Triple Nickels" Battalion jumped into some 36 forest fires during their time as first responders, including the 1945 Mt. Baker fire. 

Doctor Bartlett, who is a Vietnam War Veteran himself, also talked about the accomplishments of his father during times of segregation and racism and how we can honor and remember the sacrifices of the past. 

"History can unite our minds and our bodies and dispositions to move to engage life rather than contemplating it as an outsider. You can do this by widening our view to include the silent voices of the past," says Dr. Bartlett. 

Doctor Bartlett is currently a professor at Eastern Washington University teaching sociology and justice studies. 

He was also voted "Most Beloved Faculty" by students in 2012.