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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. (Gridley’s Unbroken.)

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.)

Stu’s Notes:
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.