March 25, 2005
Oroville Mercury, April 18, 1945, March 2, 1944
Mrs. Jones Killed While at War Work
A recent report received in Oroville concerning the death of Mrs.
Alice Jones of San Pedro indicated that her death occurred as the
result of a traffic accident. A more recent letter from Mrs. C.
F. Owens of Richmond states that Mrs. Jones was killed at her job
in the Navy Supply Depot when a towmotor car, out of control, crushed
her against a concrete wall. Mrs. Jones, 55, lived in Oroville for
twenty years and has many friends still here.
Former Local Youth Killed
Gerald A. Rutherford, 24, second lieutenant in the Army Air
Force who was killed Saturday near Washington, Fla., When struck
by a passenger bus, was a student at Oroville High School from 1933-36.
While attending the local school, Rutherford made his home with
Mr. and Mrs. A. J. Vaughan, on High Street. He visited here last
summer while stationed at the Chico Army Air Field. Son of Mr. and
Mrs. Walter A Rutherford, the lieutenant was a native of Redding
. His parents reside there. He had been in the Air Corps three years,
receiving his pilot’s wings and commission in November when he was
graduated from Stockton Field.
Stu’s notes: “Rosie the Riveter”; Although she might not have
ever driven a rivet as many of my friends have, she did go away
from home to serve the war effort, as many Women did. There is a
“Rosie” living at Prestige, I’ve just been informed. My grandmother,
Betty Mills, at age 53, left Montana to work in a defense plant
in Washington state, before moving to Oroville and buying a chicken
ranch that I live on today. Mrs. Alice Jones gave her life in this
effort. As many other women did, they were dangerous jobs so far
from their homes. Some way we must find a way to honor these women
in our memorial. I read the papers of the war years, most women
didn’t even get their first name in print. Then it was usually,
Mrs. Sam Jones or Tom, Mike, or George. This is all I know of Alice
Jones, hopefully someone knows more.
Gerald A. Rutherford, didn’t die of a bomb or a bullet, but he
died serving his country, so far from Oroville and so young. We
will honor him in our memorial as a soldier who died for his country.
This is all I know of this young man. If anyone has time and could
research on the computer for me it would be great!
We are applying for a grant through Congressman John T. Doolittle,
hopefully we will receive it for our Veterans Memorial Park here
in Oroville. In light of the price that Oroville Veterans have paid
for our freedom we feel it is well deserved here in Oroville. Also
the fact that so much is spent on memorials on the East Coast, Oroville
is long over due for some of this money. I know that a lot of the
money for Veterans Memorials comes from private donations. The land
that they are on is usually public land. We need money to acquire
a suitable site to build our memorial. The memorial it self should
be built with the donations of the people of Oroville. The site
we have chosen next to our Veterans Memorial Hall, is exactly where
a Veterans Memorial should be. It was often the last place in Oroville
that our young boys were the day they boarded the bus for WWII.
For the many from Oroville that lost their lives it was the last
Oroville ground they walked on. The land will be owned and maintained
by the City of Oroville. All can be proud that the Oroville Area
finally has remembered its FORGOTTEN HEROES. Please write a letter
and even include this story to Congressman John T. Doolittle 2410
Rayburn House Office Building, Washington, D.C. 20515. You may want
to call him at (202) 225-2511 or fax him at (202) 225-5444. He also
has an office in Granite Bay 4230 Douglas Blvd. Suite 200, Granite
Bay, California 95746. (916) 786-5560.