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May 29, 2015
Oroville Mercury Register
January 7, 1953
Yuba City GI Wins Argument and Saves Life With 2nd Division

Korea (UP)- The death cards dealt these 2nd Division soldiers during 1952 turned out to be jokers. Engineer Pvt. Herb Goldtooth, Yuba City, Calif., picked up and put on a discarded armored vest and was arguing with a friend about its advantages. Two minutes later a Communist mortar shell exploded alongside him. Fragments bounced off the vest. His friend started looking for a vest.

Pvt. Ray A. Combs, Cincinnati, O., was on patrol one night when a hand grenade slipped from his harness. The pin popped out and the grenade rolled inside the neck of his armored vest. It was armed to explode within seconds. His buddies dived for cover while Combs fumbled frantically for the grenade. It was a dud.

An unidentified French soldier charged a Communist hill. An enemy infantryman threw a grenade that hit the Frenchman in one eye. But it bounced back before exploding and killed the Communist.

An infantryman of Dog company 9th regiment was sitting by his bunker when a shell landed near by. It bounded toward him without exploding, hit his leg and flipped up against his stomach. He went to the hospital with an “abdominal disturbance”.

Oroville Mercury Register
May 31, 1952
News From Oroville Men In The Service

Now in Japan - Richard Edward Blair, son of Mr. and Mrs. James White, Oroville, and husband of Jean Blair, also of Oroville, is now in Japanese waters on the aircraft carrier Valley Forge, according to word received by his parents. Blair, who is graduate of Oroville Union High School, joined the U. “S. Navy on January 29, of this year. He recently spent a short leave in Oroville before leaving for overseas duty. He is an apprentice airman on the big carrier.

Oroville Mercury Register
May 31, 1952

Lt. S. E. Crapser - While serving aboard the aircraft carrier USS Antietam with Fighter Squadron 837, Lt. S. E. Crapser, USN, husband of Mrs. Cecelia M. Crapser of Oroville, was awarded the Air Medal. The Award, presented by Vice Admiral R. P. Briscoe, WSN, Commander Seventh Fleet, was giver for the pilot’s participation in aerial strikes against the Communists made between Oct., 1951 and March, 1952. The Antietam recently returned to the United States after completing a six month tour of duty with Task Force 77 operating in the Korean area.

Oroville Mercury Register
Aug. 20, 1952
Absentee Ballots For Servicemen Available

Butte county servicemen can receive absentee ballots for the November 4 presidential election through the office of the county clerk. The applications should be made between October 15 and 30, W. F. Matthews, County Clerk, has announced. They must be marked by the absent voter on or before Nov. 4, and must be returned to the clerk’s office before Nov. 20 to be counted in the election.

Stu’s Notes:
The above story of that lucky Yuba City Soldier reminded me about Sgt. Deborah Jean Shaner’s story about her WWII Flak Vest given to her when she first got to Iraq in 2003. She wore it until she was issued a more modern one. She wanted to hang it on the inside of the door of her truck that she drove all over Iraq; no, the Army needed it. So her thin truck door is all she had for protection. She was also lucky, driving 17,000 miles all over Iraq in 2003-2004 and she came home in one piece.

Memorial Day went well, but remember we planned for these events for a long time and ate a lot of donuts. I cannot thank Sherry enough, not just for the many donuts she brought and home baked goodies but also holding our committee together. It is sad to put on an event that means so much, to Honor our great men and women who wore the Uniform of American’s finest. So many that died for us. What did I see looking out at the hill top full of there final resting place, Maybe 75 people all the rest where in the program. Oroville, I know we can do better. Many people you thought would and should be there were not. Well no one can say they didn’t hear about our next day to Honor Our Heroes, POW/MIA recognition Day the 3rd Friday of September. But before that you can Honor our Heroes at the State Theater July 3rd and 4th when the Community Chorus and Community Band, presents their 4h of July Concert. Next week I well thank more of those that made Memorial Day a special day.