CSS Tabbed Menus Css3Menu.com

June 13, 2003
Oroville Mercury Register March 19, 1945

“What are you doing here?” was the remark the amazed Mrs. Jas. R. West made when she walked into the bus depot in Dunsmuir and saw her soldier husband she believed to be in Alaska calmly drinking a cup of coffee at the counter. He was equally surprised because he thought his wife was in Oroville. It all happened when Sgt West was granted a 30-day furlough to come home. Planning to surprise his wife in Oroville, he flew part way and then took the train from Seattle. Having a short lay-over in Dunsmuir, he walked around and could not resist the temptation to enter the bus station and telephone his wife. Meanwhile, Mrs. West, who had been visiting her aunt in Dunsmuir was preparing to return home. She had just entered the bus station and could hardly believe her eye when she saw the familiar figure. Sgt. West has served for nearly two years in the Alaskan area and saw action with the Infantry at Kiska. At the end of his leave he will report back to his station in Anchorage. He has some interesting stories to tell about hunting and fishing in that cold country. He was with a party that brought in on the same day a mountain goat weighing 400 pounds and a bear that weighed 250 pounds. The son of Mr. and Mrs. K. R. West, he attended the local schools and entered the army about three years ago. The couple are staying at the home of Mrs. West's parents, Mr. and Mrs. A. L. Richter.

Lawrence Stram of Oroville, pharmacist's mate third class of the navy, was wounded on Iwo Jima according to a V-mail letter received Saturday by his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Milo Stram, now of Vallejo. Stram told them he had been flown to a hospital in the Mariana where he was receiving treatment and asked them not to worry about him, that he would write later. He did not reveal the extent of his wound. Stram, who went overseas, last August, was attached to the fifth marine division. He landed on two. Feb. 19, and assisted in bringing out casualties in the furious battle for the island. He had been overseas since August. Stram's parents received a letter from him a week ago in which he praised the bravery of the wounded taken from the rocky island. At that time Stram was at a rest camp in the rear area after having been on the front lines. He wrote then, “I came through without a scratch.”

One of the newest members of the "I bombed Japan Club,: Lt. George O'Kelley , brother of Mrs. Gray Lawton of Oroville, won his membership in the enviable club by virtue of participation in raids over the Kuriles on a recently stepped up aerial drive against the Kuriles from bases in the Western Aleutians. The medium bombardment squadron, to which O'Kelley has been assigned, has distinguished itself many times in sea searches and patrol missions of the North Pacific. Members of this squadron have brought terror to surface craft and enemy shipping of all types in daring deck-level attacks of precision bombings and completely devastating strafing runs carried out in the face of great hazards in the home waters of the Japanese Empire. O'Kelley, son of Mr. and Mrs. Overton O'Kelley of Alturas, attended army schools at Lincoln, Neb., University of Nebraska, Santa Ana, Ryan Field, Hamett and Minter Field. Prior to entering the service, he was a student at Sacramento Junior College.

Stu's notes: Tomorrow is Flag Day. I hope everybody flies his or her flag. We have received word that our daughter Debbie (Sgt. Deborah J Shaner) is with her group somewhere around Baghdad. I have a blue star in my window, something I've often read about but never thought I would need. It represents a service man or woman over seas in a War Zone. My Grandmother had two in her window during WWII. If you need one, call your congressman. Mine is Rick Keene. Lawrence Stram was one of the lucky ones on Iwo, 6,000 of our Brave young men died there, including one of Oroville's finest, Arlin Rhine.