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December 11, 2009

Oroville Mercury Register April 24, 1944

Oroville Soldier Guards Trail On New Guinea Drive
How Raymond A. Lerner, 25, Oroville army private, stood guard over a trail after the American had forced a landing at Tanahmerah Bay in northern New Guinea was described today by a United Press war correspondent writing of the attack. William C. Wilson, the correspondent, said the Americans poured into the beachhead almost without opposition after United States warships had ripped the beaches with explosives and carrier planes had strafed the Japanese positions, driving the enemy back into the hills. Wilson reported thousands of engineers in the first landing wave immediately began the formidable task of trying to bulldoze roads into the jungle hills. “The force landed 11 miles from the airdromes area and must push across a difficult cliff-like range rising more than 700 feet,” he said “The beachhead is surrounded by deep sago swamps, but the troops quickly extended the perimeter 2,000 yards.” “I just returned from the furthest outpost and can testify that it is the most difficult terrain encountered on any landing thus far on New Guinea or New Britain. The group I was with had to climb over slippery rocks, though gorges, waded knee deep in swamps, and climb hills by hanging onto vines. Guarding what little trail there is was Military Policeman, Pfc. Raymond A. Lerner, Oroville, Calif. Military Policeman Lerner is the son of Mr. and Mrs. F. H. Lerner of Palermo Road. He was drafted three years ago and has been over seas eighteen months. Until recently he had been stationed in Australia. His parents received a letter from him two weeks ago from “Somewhere in the Southwest Pacific, they told the Mercury. Before he went into the army he was employed at the Wyandotte Olive Growers Assn. cannery here.

OMR April 15, 1944
Hislop Hen Has Sabotage Tendency
A saboteur among John Hislop’s hens yesterday laid her fifth “rising son” egg since Pearl Harbor. On it appears a circular mark and lines radiate from it. Hislop found the egg in a nest in his hen house on his place at Thompson’s Flat on Cherokee road. “She never lays the eggs in the same nest,” he said, “and I can’t find her.”

Not Proud Of Japanese Palm
The first “typically Californian” spot westbound travelers over the Western Pacific see is Oroville, and the plot at the railroad passenger station planted to tropical and semi=tropical fruits attracts keen interest. One can ascertain what the trees are by reading the neat signs: “Avacado, Kadota fig, jujube, Satsuma orange, loquat, mission olive, pomegranate, fejoa… One sign displays only a white blank space on the railroad side. The lettering has been turned carefully toward the trees trunk now. If you walk around to the other side and look carefully you can read the words: “Japanese Palm.”

April 27, 1944 Twenty Five Years Ago (1919)
The 159th Infantry, California unit of the Fortieth Division was welcomed here today in a gigantic celebration drawing people from all over the country – leading the returned soldiers and sailors in the parade through the streets of Oroville were: Major Lon Bond, Major John Dooley, LT. Comm. D. H. Moulton, Capt. N. T. Enloe, Capt. Allison Ware, Capt. A. A. Courtney Jr., Lt. B. B. Meek, Ensign S. L. Spoul and Ensign Lee.

OMR May 8, 1944
Looking Backward- Twenty Five Years Ago (1919)
German people know they have been beaten but they are not penitent, according to Captain Arthur Wilson who returned to Oroville yesterday on a short furlough- Wilson spent a long period with the Army of Occupation in Germany… Sgt. And Mrs. Koenig have returned from San Francisco where Koenig received his honorable discharge… Charles Henderson of Palermo is back from San Francisco with his honorable discharge.

Stu’s Notes: I have written about the Lerner men before, Pfc. Raymond, Sgt. Percel and Pfc. George. With 3 men in the fight Mr. & Mrs. F. H. Lerner had plenty to worry about all those years. I think they all came home safely. My free roaming chicken always moves her nest around the place. I don’t recall if all those trees are still at the Depot. If not they should be replanted for the 100 year Anniversary. Maybe tree expert Rex Burris will check it out, Now our wars never seem to get over and the men and women never come home en-mass but I hope someday soon we can have a big Parade just for those that have and will come home. Sadly Butte county has lost young men over there. About 40 people came out for the Pearl Harbor Day Memorial to those that never came home. It was well done. The only Butte county dignitary there was the Gridley Mayor and I didn’t get her name. Channel 12 as always was there and did a good job. The Mercury was there, yours truly, Marysville Paper and a few other of the media. I have been going for 12 years and I see a few less faces that I recognize every year. Many were 17-20 years when the bombs and bullets fell, which add 68 years come to over 85 years old. Oroville’s Bob Wolfersberger and Darby Miller went with me. To me it was a most exciting day, to get to spend it with those two WWII heroes. They even let me buy their lunch. More on what they did someday. Although Darby says if I write about him anymore he won’t tell me anymore stories. Happy Birthday Betty.