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January 14, 2005
Oroville Mercury Register March 23, 1944

In The Fight
Warrant Officer John M. Williams and Pfc. Richard Warmack are brother Marines and “just like brothers” in civilian life. Williams, a member of the U. S. Marine Air Force, has been in the service for 7 years. Before entering the marine corps, he was employed in the electric store operated by Mr. and Mrs. Randall Warmack, parents of Pfc. Warmack, and made his home with the family. His seven-year hitch in the marine corps is really two hitches and represents two en-listments. He has been highly commended in the service as a radio maintenance expert, and has advanced from a private to his present rating. Williams is a graduate of Oroville High School class of 1935. His wife, the former Carol Gray, is employed at the Agricultural Extension Service office here. His last visit here was 14 months ago. Williams’ picture shows him clad in the garb worn by officers in the jungles. He is somewhere in the South Pacific. Warmack enlisted in the Marine corps in January, 1943. He received his boot training at San Diego. His field is radio communications and he attended radio school and received radio field training before going overseas in January 1944. Warmack was with the 4th Marine Division in the Marshall Islands engagement. Before enlisting, he also worked at his father’s electric store. His wife, the former Faye Bundy is making her home with her husband’s parents. The couple were married July 25, 1943, and lived at Oceanside until Warmack went overseas. Warmack was graduated from Oroville High School in 1943. He visited here about a week before going across. Although he was wearing only one medal at the time his picture was taken. Warmack now holds three, for sharp-shooting, small bore target shooting and skill with the bayonet.
In a letter received today by Mr. and Mrs. Warmack, their son writes, in part, “There isn’t heck of a lot I can tell you about what I am doing. I can say that I was in the fighting on the Marshall Islands of Toi and Namus, and was on Kwajlein for awhile…”The Red Cross work is swell. They do a lot to help the country. On the way over here the Red Cross gave us a ditty-bag full of toilet articles, cards, a book, and a game of some sort. “I never thought I’d get so homesick… Getting all the mail I did when I arrived boosted my morale.” (Pictures next week)

Stu’s Notes: Four years ago, December 31,2000, I talked to Peter Maki down at the Feather River Nature Center. I said “Peter it’s time to build a Veterans Memorial in Oroville, but I need a co-chairman.” He immediately said “Let’s do it!” That previous summer I had talked to him and some of the American Legion’s Boys #95, Ronnie Scharbor, Skip Robertson and Bill Connelly. They all said they would help. I talked to Veterans of my Methodist Church, Ted Grainger, our chaplin, Ed Ewalt, Doug Krause, and Darby Miller, they said they would come. Peter and I decided we would have our 1st meeting somewhere in June. As I would finish the Men Who Built Oroville Dam Memorial in May. Lynn said “Why so soon?” But offered her total support. My good friend Bill Fox said he would like to help and has he ever. My WWII friend Nick Krpan came also. Skip and Ronnie got permission to use the Veterans Memorial Hall. Our 1st meeting was June 17, 2001 (we have not missed a 3rd Monday meeting since). Dick Ferguson came to represent the Native Sons of the Golden West, J. D. Smith was there, he is with the Gold Country Casino. Joan Lee and her sister Pat McClanahan came. They lost their brother in Vietnam (Thomas Van Campen). Bob Leach, Oroville Monument, came. In the next few meetings, more came. Stan Rinehart, our secretary, also represents VFW 9602, Mary Vincent, representing Supervisor Bob Bealer, Bob Sharkey of the Feather River Recreation and Park District came on board at our 3rd meeting. How lucky we were to have Bob. John Loewe of the Oroville Mirror came. The names you have just read are still coming 4 years later except for Ed Ewalt, who has passed away. Most likely to service related injuries. Peter Maki moved to far off places. I think he is still wandering. He was such a help to me. We also miss Pat, who moved south. Thank goodness Bill Connelly took his place. Since they others have joined our group and have helped a lot but that’s another story. Stay tuned.