Richard Bach Biography
Born in 1936 in Oak Park, Ill.,
son of Roland Robert and Ruth Helen (Shaw) Bach, the American Richard
Bach is the great-great-great-great (how many more should I add?:) grand
son of JS Bach the great composer we all know. He attended Long Beach
State College (now California State University, Long Beach) in 1955.
An airplane pilot, he got married with his first wife and had six
children, then divorced and left his family in part because he didn't
believe in marriage. One of his children, Jonathan, wrote a book about
his relation with his father he never knew, Above the Clouds. Everything
concerning airplane was his field, including motion picture stunt pilot,
Air Force tactical fighter pilot, an aviation technical writer and
flight instructor. He even got involved as an narrator & stunt pilot in
the movie Nothing by Chance, based on his book.
Though Aviation was his true passion, he always wanted to write; since
high school, one of his gym teachers made him realize his potential.
Since 1959 he had this idea of a bird learning to pass beyond the walls
of limitations, Jonathan Livingston Seagull, which came through a
"Cinerama on my wall". Almost all his books used airplanes as a way to
pass the message. In Running From Safety, Mr. Bach shares with us his
childhood: at age 8, he lost one of his brother: Bobby. From his book,
we also know that he has a much older brother: Roy.
R. Bach met his wife, Leslie Parrish through the shooting of the movie
Jonathan Livingston Seagull in 1973, based on his book. It his said that
he sued the production for changing the movie without his permission. In
fact, those who saw the movie noticed that his name wasn't mentioned,
only the copyrights for the title "Jonathan Livingston Seagull ". My
only explanation would be that he didn't want to be part of this. And if
I put together what Bach said in his book Bridge Across Forever and what
I've read, Leslie was some sort of a moderator between the two parties
to get an arrangement for the movie.
Then they went their way, far enough from Hollywood, somewhere between
1977 and 1981. Finally, they got married in 81. Since then, Richard Bach
tried what he called the closest thing to flying: paragliding. Recently
Leslie and Richard got divorced.