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April 30, 2010

“Some Gave All”
Oroville Mercury Register July7, 1951

News From Oroville Men In The Service
Ralph W. Dunham, 22, is undergoing preliminary training at Sheppard Field, Wichita Falls, Tex., following his enlistment in the Air Force, and his brother, David J. Dunham, 19, is in boot camp training with the Marines, at San Diego. The brothers are sons of Mr. and Mrs. Lloyd L. Dunham of Quincy Road. Ralph enlisted in the Air Force June 6, and has passed all tests to start preliminary training as an air force cadet. He graduated from Oroville High School in 1947, and attended Chico State for two years. For two years before his enlistment he was an engineering student at the University of California. He was a member of the varsity football team at Oroville high school in 1947. David attended Oroville high school for three years and Yuba College for one year, before his enlistment. (From the Korean War Honor Roll, David Joe Dunham, Corporal Marine, 7 July 1952, Purple Heart KIA)

“Some Gave All”
Chico Enterprise August 19, 1944

1st Lt. ‘Dick’ Sloat, Former Chican, Killed on Saipan

Lieutenant Richard O. Sloat, son of Mr. and Mrs. Oral Sloat, former Chico residents, lost his life in the battle for Saipan, according to his uncle and aunt, Mr. and Mrs. George H. Taylor of Paradise. Belief that he was killed in the mopping up process of the Pacific Island was based on a letter which was written in July. The lieutenant then said that he had been relieved of some of the arduous duty with the tank forces and was assigned in troops engaged in shipping supplies to the front. Grandson of the late Herman Sloat, who resided with his family on the Old River Road, “Dick Sloat, and his parents moved to Puyallup, Washington. The lieutenant attended the College of Puget Sound and graduated in 1940. One of the colleges’ most popular students, he entered the Marines in 1942 and was wounded in the battle of Tarawa. Dean of the College of Puget Sound in tribute to the officer said, “ Dick was one of the finest boys I ever met in all my educational experience.” Mr. and Mrs. Sloat have another son who is now in the Veterans hospital in Oakland having lost an arm while in the South pacific campaign. Another brother is in a hospital at Los Angeles as a result of fighting in the South Pacific.

Oroville Mercury Register
September 6, 1944

In The Fight
Many men from southern Butte County are fighting the Axis in Uncle Sam’s Army, Navy, Marine and Air Corps. The Oroville Mercury wants to keep those at home informed about their activities, and relatives and friends are invited to submit pictures and news to this department.

Doering Looks For Someone From Butte
First Sgt. John K. Doering, who left Oroville on Aug. 18, 1941, for Army Service, has not seen anybody “from home” in the long 32 months that he has been in the Southwest Pacific. In a V-mail letter to the Mercury dated Aug. 19 from overseas he says that he “would enjoy getting in touch with some of the fellows from Oroville or Gridley if they happen to be in my immediate vicinity.” He said he was getting the Mercury, about a dozen copies at a time when they arrive, and usually about two months after mailing. Doering’s address is; 1st Sgt. John K. Doering, 39082056, Co. “C” 808 Engr. Avn. Bn, APO 920 c/o Postmaster San Francisco, Calif.

Stu’s Notes: Unbelievable are the sacrifices of many of the families of WWII. It was such a long and global War. Many families had sons all over the world. The Oral Sloat family was such a family. What really makes me mad, and if you think about it, you might be mad too, is almost all the National Memorials to the West Coast Falling Veterans are back on the East Coast, the Southern States and Hawaii. Think about it, what’s on the West Coast. Well by Golly Oroville’s for all of Butte County’s Memorial will be a part of finally getting those young men honored here. And in honoring the 44 that came from all over the Unite States to train at Chico and Oroville and lost their lives here. In so doing we will be doing a small part of what needs to be done. Think of all the National Memorials, Washington D.C., New Bedford, Virginia, New Orleans, Texas, Hawaii etc. What about California? Our men and women gave their blood through the years. The headline in the Chico Record did say Chican. In WWII it was not uncommon to be gone for years. My Ironworker friend Merle Eggars never touched land for a year and a half. He was on an ocean going tug. Sgt. John K. Doering is the Uncle of, my ever since 1st grade friend, Jim Doering. The Doering family had rice and still have mandarins on highway 99.
To all you Oroville Dam Builders, see you at the dinner tomorrow at the Eagles hall. It has been 42 years since the Dam was finished, we built it well!