Retired July 1, 1978.
Lieutenant General Charles Edward Buckingham is the comptroller of the Air Force.
General Buckingham was born in Chicago, Ill., in 1924. He graduated from Woodruff High School, Peoria, Ill., and attended Bradley University in Peoria from 1941 to 1943. He entered the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y., in July 1943 and graduated in June 1946 with a bachelor of science degree, commission as second lieutenant, and his pilot wings. He completed advanced pilot training at Enid Army Air Field, Okla., in October 1946.
This was followed by an assignment to Strategic Air Command as a B-29 pilot at Roswell Army Air Field, N.M. In July 1947, he underwent special training as a nuclear bomb weaponeer at Sandia Base, N.M. Upon completion of the course he was retained as an instructor.
In July 1949 General Buckingham was transferred to Carswell Air Force Base, Texas, where he served as B-36 copilot and intelligence officer in the 42d Bombardment Squadron, adjutant of the 11th Bombardment Group, aide to the commander of the 19th Air Division, and B-36 aircraft commander and executive officer of the 98th Bombardment Squadron. While at Carswell he also participated as a B-36 pilot and weaponeer on the drop aircraft in the Project Ivy nuclear weapons test at Eniwetok, Marshall Islands, and attended SAC Survival School at Stead Air Force Base, Nev.
In September 1953 General Buckingham was assigned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force in the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff for Materiel as a staff project officer for the B-47 and B-58 aircraft in the Directorate of Procurement and Production Engineering. Later he became executive officer for the assistant for production programming.
In September 1957 he was transferred to Chateauroux, France, with the Air Materiel Force, European Area, where he served with the inspector general, inspecting contract administration at plants throughout Europe. He later served as deputy chief and procurement contracting officer for the Central Procurement Division, as deputy director of plans and programs, and finally as chief of the Procurement and Production Division.
General Buckingham entered The George Washington University in August 1960 and received a master of business administration degree in advanced management in 1961. In September 1961 he went to the Ballistic Systems Division to serve in the Minuteman System Program Office in Los Angeles, and subsequently went to Norton Air Force Base, Calif., where he was chief of the Program Control Office. In this position, he instituted financial management procedures and systems that were adopted Department of Defense-wide. In August 1966 he entered the industrial College of the Armed Forces at Fort McNair, Washington, D.C.
In June 1967 General Buckingham was assigned to Headquarters U.S. Air Force, in the office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Systems and Logistics, as chief of the Aircraft Branch, in the Directorate of Production and Programming. He later was transferred to the Office of the Deputy Chief of Staff, Research and Development, as chief of the Materiel Programs Group. In November 1969 he became chief of the Aircraft and Missile Programs Division for the Assistant for Research, Development and Acquisition Programming. In July 1970 he became the assistant for requirements, development and acquisition programming.
General Buckingham was transferred to Air Force Logistics Command at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, in June 1972, as the deputy chief of staff for procurement and production, and assumed duties as the deputy chief of staff for acquisition logistics in February 1974.
General Buckingham was appointed chief of staff, Air Force Logistics Command, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio, in March 1975.
In September 1975 General Buckingham became the comptroller of the Air Force.
General Buckingham received the Air Force Association's General Thomas P. Gerrity Memorial Award for Logistics Management for 1975. Other decorations and awards include the Distinguished Service Medal, Legion of Merit, Air Force Commendation Medal with oak leaf cluster, and the Army Commendation Medal. He is a command pilot and wears the Senior Missileman Badge.
He was promoted to the grade of lieutenant general effective Sept. 1, 1975, with same date of rank.