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News Story
Updated: 02/29/2016 08:30:02AM

He was the last line of defense

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PHOTO PROVIDED

Pvt. Dennis Poulakis, now of Port Charlotte, is pictured shortly after graduating from basic training at Fort Jackson, S.C., in 1964.

PHOTO PROVIDED

Poulakis stands beside his 1962 Ford Galaxy 500, a chestnut-colored Ford convertible with white interior, at the Nike-Hercules guided missile base near Minneapolis-St. Paul.

By DON MOORE

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Port Charlotte’s Dennis Poulakis was one of the triggermen, ready to blow up any plane threatening to drop a bomb on U.S. soil.

Poulakis served in the U.S. Army’s North American Air Defense Command in the 1960s as a computer programmer for a Nike-Hercules ground-to-air, guided missile battery. They were constantly watching for Soviet strategic bombers that could carry hydrogen bombs to U.S. targets during the Cold War. Fortunately, he was never called into action.

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