August 23, 2002
SGT. RIGMAIDEN GIVEN COVETED MEDAL BY ARMY CHARGES MACHINEGUN
For gallantry in action against the enemy, Sgt. Lermar Rigmaiden
of Oroville, anti-aircraft soldier, has been awarded the Silver
Star Medal . With the Seventh Army in France, Rigmaiden risked his
life to rescue men of a reconnaissance patrol pinned down by enemy
Single handedly he charged an enemy machine gun position, killing
the gunner and forcing the others to withdraw.
The 25-year-old former Oroville High School cadet captain had hastily
formed a combat patrol and led them to the aid of the beleaguered
patrol. "As a part of his patrol's action in keeping the enemy heavily
engaged, Rigmaiden personally 'liquidated" the machine gun nest.
The men held off the attackers until a larger force arrived to complete
the rout of the attackers.
He "calms" his parents
Apparently one of the first things Rigmiaden did after having been
awarded the Silver Star was to send a letter to his parents, Mr.
and Mrs. Rigmaiden of C Street. He was afraid news of his decoration
would reach them before he had a chance to tell them that he "didn't
make a habit of exposing himself unnecessarily to danger." 'Don't
let it worry you, he urged them " I really don't go around charging
German machineguns in my spare time." He wrote that he could hardly
believe he had been awarded a medal. Rigmaiden was graduated from
the local high school in 1937. Besides having been captain of the
cadet corps, he played in the school band and won his letter in
Became store manager.
After graduating he worked for Montgomery Ward's here and later
became manager of Rasco's store in Colusa. Before going overseas
about a year ago, he trained at Camp Haan. His wife is the former
Marjorie Gerloff of Oroville. She now lives at the Nurses Residence,
French Hospital, San Francisco. He has two brothers serving with
the navy in the South Pacific. They are Herman Rigmaiden Jr., Aviation
Ordnance Mechanic, 3/C; and Ray Rigmaiden, Chief Petty Officer.
Another brother, Murl, is manager of the Valley Express Company
Rigmaiden's letter dated Dec. 21, telling of the decoration, was
the latest, one his parents have received. In it he sent holiday
greeting and said he had attended church that morning. The church,
built in 1819, had come through several wars unharmed he said. He
also told of being comfortable in a small log cabin, "as long as
it doesn't rain and of having fresh eggs several times a week and
turkey for the holiday dinners."
Lt. Don Hocking Goes Back To Army Base.
Lt. Don Hocking left today for his base in Kansas City after having
spent a few days at the home of his parents Mr. and Mrs. R. E. Hocking
of Pomona. He is a pilot in the air corps and expects to be assigned
to overseas duty in the near future. He has been in the army about
two years. He was accompanied here by his wife and son who are remaining