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November 7, 2014
Stu’s Notes:
Tuesday, November 04, Election Day, at one of the polling places in Thermalito is the Thermalito Grange which my family helped build in 1952. Lynn and I have been members since 1972. This morning I went to put up the Flag, as it should fly at the Poll’s. Standing by the front door out came Liana, a girl I knew from Oroville High School class of 1958. It was exactly 7:00 am and she said “Hear Yee, Hear Yee the Polls are now open.” Then she went back in. I thought how wonderful this was. All over America the polls had opened that morning and that the only reason this could happen in America was by the blood of our service men and women, who gave us this right. Nobody else, not the so called sports heroes, the politicians, the so called movie stars except the few of the above mentioned sports heroes, the politicians or movie stars that went to war. Most of them were in WWII. Our freedom was won by those of the Army, Marines, Navy, Air force and Coast Guard and a few Civilians that fought and died.

“Oroville Gentle Dentistry, 2014 5th Avenue, Oroville CA is proud to offer a Free Exam and Cleaning for Veterans. Sponsoring Oroville Veteran’s Memorial Park. Come enjoy America’s Favorites; Hot Dogs, Apple Pie & Chevrolet Wear your colors, share stories and enjoy great company. Veteran’s Day November 11th, 2014 8AM-5PM 533-8204 Call today to reserve your appointment. Free dentistry for Veterans on Veteran’s Day. Oroville Dentist, Dr. Sims Lowry will be providing free dental services on Veterans’ Day, November 11, 2014 as a service to those who have served our country in the military. A Veteran himself, Dr. Lowry is pleased to provide free services which can be completed on the same day, such as fillings, extractions etc. Veterans wishing to take advantage of these services should call Dr. Lowry’s office at 534-5940 and be prepared to show either their Military ID or DD214. Services provided on a first come first serve bases. Be sure to see the Parade before or after you go to enjoy the hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet. Veteran’s Day November 11 at 11AM from Feather River Blvd down Montgomery Street. Review stand will be at the City Chamber of Commerce Office. Hope to see you there. The Parade is sponsored by the Exchange Club.

Well I thought we were done having Veteran’s Day Parade meetings when I said that Bill Fox said, “No we have one more, Stu, weren’t you listening at the meeting today?” Any way the core of our meetings has been about 4 men, Bob Hewitt, Dean Hill, Bill Fox and myself. Well anyway, it’s our 18th Annual Parade, rain or shine. Remember our fighting men and women never stayed home on a count of rain sleet or hail.

More from Charles Leroy Myers (Chico High School Graduate and Prisoner of War, Wake Island 1941)
“After Capture, continued”
The longest day in my life was after working all morning, we returned to camp and the group had been held in on the parade ground. No one was allowed to go to the barracks for any reason. This was a complete check and search of everyone’s personal belongings, looking for contraband. Every prisoner had a number. My number was 333, my father’s was 332. The head Japanese officer started calling off numbers, then beat them until some were nearly dead. They kept this up until 15 or 20 men had been severely beaten. Five or six men were sent to the guardhouse so they could be punished more. I told my father they must be saving me to be beheaded as an example. I had more stuff stashed under and around my bed than others who had been called from our barracks. I knew they would find plenty and would punish me severely, even death. They then allowed everyone to go back to our barracks. I found some contraband out on the bed. About 15 minutes later, here came two guards shouting “son haku san jue son, 333” I shook hands with my dad and said, “Tell the folks hello for me. You try to make it home. The war’s almost over, I hope.” The two guards came down this long center walkway shouting “ 333, number one thief!” Everyone was standing at attention expecting the worst. The guard then took most of the loot, saying out loud, “333 was O.K., No thief.” You never really understood the Japanese and how they would react at certain times. Soon after they moved us from Camp 18 at the airport to the Tree Camp 1. We called it the Hog Sheds. It was dug down into the dirt, built so low the taller men could only stand up at the edge of the walkway. The Japanese had dug bomb holes next to the barracks. We were told by the guards that they had instructions from high up that we were to be executed if the Americans put troops into Japan. My father and I did not go to the bomb shelter the night Fukaoka was bombed. We felt it was safer to stay out side than to go into the hole. It was pitch black at night and no lights were allowed. We watched fires and bombs bursting as the camp was not far from the airport that we hand help build. While with the mechanic crew at the last camp, I was able to get some sheet copper and make a cigarette pack holder. It was made with a double wall that slid into each other making it a very strong case for Japanese cigarettes. I had it engraved by one of the Java prisoners. He engraved a nude woman on the base. The lead guard saw it and wanted one for himself. (to be continued.)