A-Bomb Weaponeer Dies
Santa Fe, N.M.- Frederick L. "Dick" Ashworth, the weaponeer aboard the B-29 that dropped the atomic bomb on Nagasaki, Japan, near the close of World War II, has died.
Ashworth, retired in 1968 as a Navy vice admiral. He died Saturday while undergoing heart surgery.
In the early 1940s,
Ashworth was assigned to the New Mexico-based Manhattan Project that built
the A-bomb. He was a member of the bomber crew that dropped a weapon nicknamed
Fat Man on Nagasaki on August 9, 1945. Ashworth as assigned as the weaponeer,
responsible for arming the bomb during the flight. Death toll estimates
in Nagasaki range from 60,000 to 80,000. Japan surrendered unconditionally
on August 15.
After the war, he did military liaison work with the Atomic Energy Commission and commanded the Navy's Sixth Fleet, then based in France
Ashworth was born in Beverly, Massachusetts and is survived by his wife, three sons, three grandchildren and one great-grandchild.
December 7, 2005