In 1958 Ray Guyer was hired as an Assistant Chemical Operator at Rocky Flats. He was 20 years old when he was hired, and he continued to work for Rocky Flats for the next 40 years. Eventually he landed in the Research and Development department and developed processes that earned two patents. In this interview Ray describes numerous aspects of his working experience: facility security, conditions of secrecy, conditions of safety (or lack thereof), as well as the step-by-step process of converting liquid plutonium nitrate into plutonium “buttons”, the war-head triggers. Ray was vociferously opposed to what he saw as intentional mishandling of inventory, waste material, and government documents. This stance led him to early retirement in 1995 and then got him rehired, that same year, presumably to help with effective cleanup efforts. Ray was let go after he continued to speak bluntly about environmental and health hazards.
Listen to CD and view transcript at Carnegie Branch Library.