March 27, 2015
Oroville Mercury – Register
August 31, 1945
“Some Gave All”
Gridley Man Found Alive In Japanese Prison
Mrs. Helen Stoddard of Gridley learned today that her husband Capt.
Luren A Stoddard, AAF, whose plane was shot down over Saipan more
than a year ago, is alive and well, one of the Allied Prisoners
of war liberated by special rescue mission of the U. S. 3rd Fleet.
A radio message was the first definite information concerning her
husband that Mrs. Stoddard had received since the War Department
notified her that Stoddard’s plane had been strafed and submerged
in the Pacific on May 29, 1944. In April of this year, the government
intercepted a radio broadcast from Japan on which a man who claimed
to be Stoddard’s co-pilot, spoke saying that both he and Stoddard
were being held prisoners in Tokyo but that they were safe and well.
Played In Orchestra
Capt. Stoddard is well-known locally, for he and his brothers were
members for some time of the All Stars’ Orchestra. Stoddard graduated
from Gridley High School, attended Chico State College for a short
time, and then San Jose State, before entering the air corps in
February, 1941. He graduated from Luke Field, Arizona, as a lieutenant
in October 1941, and went overseas in November in time to be in
on the Pearl Harbor disaster in December. For bravery in action
at that time, he was awarded the Silver Star. His wife, the former
Helen Joe Fife of Gridley, was visiting Stoddard’s brother, Eugene
Stoddard, in Woodland, at the time the good news reached her. She
has been a teacher at Chico High School during her husband’s absence.
Aaron Stoddard, brother of Luren, also of the AAF, was killed in
action in Europe last September. Lt. Harald (Bill) Stoddard, the
youngest of the family is at present stationed on Saipan.
(Stu- Alive and well, we know he’s gone through hell.)
Oroville Mercury – Register
July 9, 1965
Oroville’s Past 15 YEARS AGO (1950)
Oroville’s National Guard company, which returned Sunday from two
week’s of intensive training at Camp San Luis Obispo and Camp Cooke,
prepared today to build its strength in accordance with an “immediate
recruitment” order affecting guard units throughout the state. Major
General Curtis D. O’Sullivan, adjutant general of the California
National Guard, today ordered immediate recruitment of 1665 men
to bring the guard to the permitted strength.
(Stu- Think Korea War.)
25 Years Ago (1940)
Possibility of improving Oroville Municipal Airport to fit in with
the new national defense program was considered by the city council
Monday night. Mayor Hoke was authorized to confer with Douglas Jacobs
who asked council members to take steps to assure hangar and service
facilities at the airport, so it might be eligible for possible
federal aid.(Stu-Think WWII coming.)
It never ceases to amaze me of the Heroes of Butte County and
what they went through for the Freedom’s we know and take for granted.
I truly think that if every one in Butte County went to the Web
site, that Daryl has created, and read all the stories I’ve found,
the money to finish our Memorial would come forward and we could
finish this beautiful Memorial that we here in Oroville have created,
most of what we’ve done has come from Grant Money. Money outside
our County. When you read about what Capt. Luren A. Stoddard’s family
went through when three of their sons had gone to War. They gave
so much for their country, let’s finish this memorial. I beg the
3 Council Members and 2 Feather River Parks Members, that control
Millions of Department of Water Recourses Money (in the future)
to think hard of that. This story of the Stoddard Family and their
sacrifices is just one of so many families of Butte County That
Gave “All” and more during WWII, our way of life was on the line,
that we enjoy today. Over 450 Men had to die from Butte County and
400,000 from America. If they had not of given their lives, Hitler
and Tojo would have ruled the World. That includes you and me, well
we under 70 years old probably would not have been born as their
Fathers and Mothers would have perished in slave labor camps. This,
I, Stu Shaner, truly believe; I’m not bragging but I think I’ve
given my share over the last 14 years but I will still give more.
We have a young man named Greg who has had many difficulties in
his life but if you count his giving as the percent of his income
he is #1 in my book. Thank you Greg from the bottom of my heart.
Someone asked me the other day have you gone to individuals of the
area for support, I said no, we don’t beg, we just hope they will
come forward. I know many of my readers are on fixed incomes. They
are not the one’s I’m writing about. Perhaps my editor will not
allow my above writing and I would not blame him.