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April 28, 2006
More from the Scrapbook of Maxine Gilbert

Ake Wins Rating As Navy Signalman
Robert A. Ake, 21, son of Mr. and Mrs. Charles A. Mott, High Street, has completed 16 weeks of training in a navy school on the campus of the University of Illinois, and has been awarded a petty officer rating as signalman, third class.

Cadet Corkin Finishers His Basic Training (Pecos, Tex.)
Aviation Cadet Thomas J. Corkin, son of Mr. and Mrs. H. B. Corkin of the American Farms, Oroville, has completed his basic flying training at Pecos Army air Field at Pecos. It was announced here. He will proceed to advanced tactical training with the AAF before entering combat duty.

Pvt. Arriago Attending Army School In Chicago
Pvt. Albert Arriago, in the army air corps, is attending school in Chicago, according to information received by friends. He was sent from Kingman, Ariz., where he had been stationed at an air field. Previously he was at Chico Flying Field.

Pvt. Arthur Gould Goes To East Coast
Pfc. Arthur Gould of Oroville stationed recently for a number of weeks near Los Angeles and later at Riverside, made several visits with friends in San Diego before leaving for the east coast with the army unit.

Cadets Snap Into it, At CWCE, says Drobish
Drill training of air corps cadets at Central Washington College of Education, where Cadet Harry B. Drobish is stationed, approaches that given at West Point, he says in a letter to the Mercury. Drobish is with the 314th College Training Detachment (air crew) at the college. There are about 400 aviation students receiving training at the school. “We are quartered in what formerly was a girls’ dormitory with 2 or 3 students to a room,” he writes. “We arise at 0600 and every minute of the time-until 1700 must be on our toes. At 2200 (10 p.m..) we retire. “Things the boys talk about more than anything else are when will the war be over, and what they’ll do when they get back home. My thoughts run about the same way.”

Promoted to Corporal, Taking Engineer Course
Charles S. Blakeslee, son of Mr. and Mrs. Claude Blakeslee of Woodleaf Star route, Oroville, has been promoted to the rank of corporal in the army and is now taking a course in engineering at the University of Kentucky in Lexington. He reports the country beautiful with rolling green hills covered by white maple and many beautiful flowers. He writes that the University and grounds cover seventy five acres, also , that the people in Lexington are most hospitable.

Stu’s Notes: I had lunch the other day with Louise Krpan, she is the sister of Oroville Veterans Memorial Park Committee Member, Nick Krpan. She was a “Rosie The Riveter”. One of the ladies that went to work in the defense plants. They came from farms, hill, small and big town all over America to help the men build the ships, planes, tanks etc. that were needed to win the war. This was a new thing in America. Before then, few women worked in America’s Heavy Industry Factories. My Grandmother Betty “Shaner” Mills did this in a defense plant in Washington State. She had German and Italian POW’s working under her control. Rosie the Riveter is the term these girls, ladies, etc, were called. They didn’t just rivet, they welded, connected and basically did every thing it took to build what needed to be built. Louise worked on the B-17’s, one of our main heavy bombers, 12,500 were made. The McDonald Douglas plant in Long Beach built 3,000 and Louise was there from #3 until the 3,000th at the end of the war. She is very proud of her effort to win the war. I can tell this just by the way she told me this story. For many years she worried and prayed that she didn’t make a mistake that would cause some young airman to die in a crash. Louise worked at the end of the assembly line to fix anything that was wrong. One time she went all alone to the nearby ocean and was swept seaward by the undercurrent and almost drown, but lucky a big wave returned her to shore. The young generation of today should talk to people from her generation more often. Sometimes I look at the children of today and think they haven’t a hard time yet, compared to our past generation, Louise grew up on a hard scrapple farm in Walsenburg, Colorado. She lost her immigrant, Slavic nationality, Father when she was 10. Her brother Nick and four sister’s all pitched in just to survive. Remember this is before food stamps and government aide of any kind. Her mother was in the Ludlow massacre, when the Militia opened fire on the striking coal miners. She escaped by running up a narrow gully, pregnant and with two young daughters by her side. I cannot even fathom the hardship I hear when I get the honor to hear the stories of old and I’m 65. Soon we will move forward with our Veterans Memorial. You will be able to actually see things being done on the properties East of the Veterans Memorial Hall. 5 years have gone by since we started. It’s about time! Although amazing (as only my readers know) we are still finding more people that “Gave All.” And I know we will fine more even after we think we are done.