Mr. White, of Salem and formerly of Keizer, died Wednesday, July 7, 2010. He was 93 years old.
Born June 2, 1917, in Collinston, La. to William Spencer and Commie Juanita Thompson White, he grew up in Bastrop, La. as the fourth of five children. He attended Ouchita Parrish High school before joining the U.S. Navy in 1936.
Before World War II Mr. White served aboard the USS Astoria, at one point escorting the remains of the Japanese ambassador to the United States for burial in his homeland, and was one of 400 crew members participating in the funeral march and 13-course meal on the Imperial Palace grounds.
During World War II he served aboard a destroyer in the north Atlantic and in 1942 was transferred to the Pacific theater, serving as chief boatswain mate on the USS Halligan, participating in all major battles and landings in the Pacific. He participated in the Battle of Okinawa in a fire suppression unit.
On March 26, 1945 his ship struck a mine, and Mr. White was blinded and suffered burns over most of his body. He was the only surviving chief petty officer.
Mr. White wed Ruth Vernon on Oct. 13, 1941, and the family lived in Guam, Japan and San Diego.
After his navy retirement he managed Tools and Metals in El Jajon, Calif. until his retirement in 1979. He was a volunteer for the San Diego Food Share before moving to Oregon in 2002.
He attended Keizer Church of Christ and enjoyed mowing his lawn, Bible study and planting summer vegetables.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Lois and Ruth; and two brothers, Cedric and Lamar “Sonny.” Survivors include: his wife, Ruth Vernon White; son, Dave White; daughter, Dell (Rich) Ford; five grandchildren, Davina Caruso, Melissa White, Danielle Kissinger, Wendi and Martin Johnson; and seven great-grandchildren, Alyssa, Davin, Jadin, Jericho, Jesse, Sage and Tyler.
Viewing will be from noon – 6 p.m. Wednesday, July 14, at Virgil T. Golden Funeral Home in Salem. Memorial services and reception will be 10:30 a.m. – 1 p.m. Thursday, July 15, at Keizer Church of Christ. Interment with full military honors is at 3 p.m. at the Veterans’ Cemetery in Portland.
The McNary mat club sent four wrestlers to a western regional tournament in Pocatello, Idaho. Making the trip were Andy Downer, Anthony Flores, Brayden Ebbs and Wyatt Kesler.
Only those wrestlers who finished in the top eight of their division at their state tournament qualified for Pocatello.
Downer, who competed at 128 pounds in the Schoolboy division, placed sixth in Folk style in Idaho.
Flores wrestled at 215 pounds in the Cadet division and placed fourth in Folk, fourth in Greco and third in Freestyle.
Ebbs competed at 75 pounds in the Intermediate division. He placed fifth in Folk, third in Greco and third in Freestyle.
Kesler also qualified in three divisions, but did not place at the regional meet.
Eleven states comprise the western regional: Oregon, Alaska, Arizona, California, Hawaii, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.
“This was our first trip to this tournament,” said Coach Jason Ebbs, “and the talk there was that the caliber of wrestling this year was higher than it was last year. Oregon was very well-represented at the podium. Oregon had a lot of wrestlers that placed, and a lot of wrestlers that placed high.”
In other news:
• The McNary wrestling program is sending 21 wrestlers to the K & K Wrestling Camp in Leavenworth, Washington. The annual event draws some 200 campers each year.
• Three siblings – Stevin, Sam and Ajay Urban – along with Tim Pippert and Flores are raising money so they can attend a national tournament in Fargo, North Dakota.
The goal for each wrestler is to raise $2,500 to cover expenses. As a result, the wrestlers are engaged in a variety of fund-raising activities.
Call Crystal Urban at 503-910-7953 for more information
Sam Urban is the defending state champion in her girls’ division while Stevin placed at last year’s state meet and is a defending district champion.
Brayden Ebbs returned home with two third place medals from a national youth wrestling tournament held in Orem, Utah.
The 10-year-old competed in the Greco and Freestyle divisions.
“I don’t know,” Brayden said when asked the secret of his success. “I’ve been wrestling for a long time.”
Bradyen entered the tournament a little hesitant about his chances, as he is more familiar with the collegiate style of wrestling than he is with either Greco or Freestyle. So his performance surprised him.
Brayden is the son of Trisha and Jason Ebbs, head coach of the McNary wrestling program. He plays baseball and football when not wrestling.
“When it comes to wrestling, it’s kind of the family business,” Brayden said, who added he’s already one-upped his father.
Brayden said his father was no stranger to national tournaments in his younger days.
“My dad had seven chances but never became an all-American,” said Brayden. “I became an all-American on my first chance.”
Ms. Hailey, of Salem, died July 4, 2010. She was 77.
She was born Nov. 18, 1932, in Gervais. She was a Keizer resident for many years, who had recently moved to The Springs.
She was preceded in death by her husband, Kent; and youngest son, Scott. Survivors include: two sons, Greg (Louise) and Kevin Hailey; three grandsons, Luke, Daniel and Stephen Hailey; and two great-granddaughters, Zephaniah and Mercy Hailey.
Ms. Gandee, of Keizer, died Sunday, June 27, 2010. She was 72.
Born Dec. 15, 1936, in Boone County, Neb., she married Merle Houk on June 30, 1956, and together they had seven children.
She was preceded in death by her husband. Survivors include: her children, Edwina (Gary), Caye (Carol), Douglas, Raliegh, Heidi (D’Lee), Elaine (Brad) and Stephen; six grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; two brothers; and several nieces and nephews.
Services will be at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, July 10, at the VFW Hall at 630 Hood Street NE.
Dave Bauer said this week he won’t run for mayor or city council in 2010.
The longtime Keizerite has been mulling a bid for the elected body, in particular the seat of Mayor Lore Christopher, who announced recently she will seek her sixth term in office.
But Bauer, who operates his family’s insurance agency, said business and personal commitments have led him not to run. Three city councilors – Cathy Clark, Jim Taylor and Richard Walsh – are up for re-election along with Christopher.
“While I would love to do it it’s just not going to work for me personally,” Bauer said. “I would encourage anyone who’s interested to do so at this time.”
Bauer had criticized the council previously for what he called a tendency to “justify their position” when residents testify against a pending council action.
“I still believe decisions need to be made with input from the community,” Bauer said. “Sometimes the council still makes decisions with their information, not with community input … Sometimes I don’t think that happens.”
Despite his criticism, Bauer said Keizer is “better off with (Christopher’s) 10 years of service to the community. I really believe that.”
In other election-themed news:
• Clark touts her work on regional transportation issues and committees in her as-yet-unopposed bid for a second term on the council.
In a press release issued last week she said she is “excited” to see results from the Chemawa Interchange study and noted her work with the Salem-Keizer Transit District as it searched for a location in Keizer for a transit center.
A member of the Transportation and Community Development committees for the Oregon League of Cities, she said Keizer “must have a voice in all regional decision making.”
Clark also wants to start a Walkable Keizer committee designed to help homeowners maintain sidewalks in front of their homes and raise funds to build and upgrade sidewalks. The group would also promote activities to encourage “walking for fun and health.”
If re-elected she also wants to study further a bridge proposal from southeast Keizer across Salem Parkway to the Kroc Center.
The odor of sulphur overcomes any other as hundreds of rifles are fired simultaneously during a battle. However, the smell of hot gun powder, pungent as it may be, is not what absorbs one’s mind while on the battlefield.
If any sense rises above the rest during an attack, it is hearing.
As a soldier marches onto the field surrounded by his company his hearing is overwhelmed by sounds of crackling gun shots, swift cavalry, distant cries from enemy lines and thunderous, brain-rattling cannon fire.
Every battle scenario is deafening.
I know because I was on the battlefield shooting one of those rifles last weekend at Willamette Mission State Park, which hosted the annual Civil War reenactment staged by the Northwest Civil War Council.
I was given the chance to spend a day with both the Confederate and Union armies.
This allowed me first-hand experience in many things, like living in military camps of the 1860s, shooting a cannon for the first time – and of course, dying a glorious, but painless, death on the battlefield in front of countless spectators.
Going into the weekend, one motive that rose above the rest was discovering who these reenactors are. What kind of person makes a hobby out of recreating a war that happened 149 years ago?
“I find myself having to choose my words wisely when I tell my co-workers what I do for the 4th every year. I wonder what they will think of me if I say, ‘Well, I’m a reenactor…’” explains Jarod Re, captain of the 4th Virginia of the Confederate army.
“I get really weird assumptions of who I am when people find out I do this,” said Tim Bobosky.
Many assumptions are rooted in ignorance of what actually happens at one of these events.
What I discovered was a group of people who come from a wide range of backgrounds and walks of life unified by their love of history, their country and camaraderie.
The event is set up to capture the atmosphere of a Civil War camp, down to every uniform button and eating utensil. Anything that falls short of being period specific is negatively referred to as “farb.”
Confederate and Union soldiers wore period-correct uniforms of wool pants, long-sleeved flannel shirts, vests and jackets in 75 degree weather.
The uniform, along with a rifle that is much heavier than it looks, make a battle scenario during mid-day without shade a memorable and sweaty effort to portray what Civil War soldiers experienced.
“It is fun to not just camp, but to relive history. This is something very do-able here in the Northwest in period-correct clothes and gear,” says Rich Wheeler of the 4th Virginia.
“Modern signifiers of class and employment are gone,” says Bobosky.
For instance, one living in the camp wouldn’t know Alan Bown of the 4th Virginia has multiple international arm-wrestling championships, or that Donny Cammeron of the 69th New York Infantry is a member of the Society for Barefoot Living.
“We are so diverse, but we put that away for the reenactment,” says Bobosky.
The reenactors are students of history. Every participant whether civilian or soldier is an expert on the armies they represent.
Most can discuss the outcomes of actual battles for hours, not to mention the names of real commanders and whether their own company survived.
For instance, Mike Cooper of the 4th Virginia did enough research on his company to know it had no survivors at the end of the war. “They were all killed, injured or captured as far as anyone knows. We can go through the records and look at actual soldiers and their personas for the company,” he said.
The ultimate goal of reenacting is to educate the public of the time period. According to Lt. Colonel Scott Eakman of the Union army, “It really helps to know who’s who and who won.”
“We do a lot of interacting with the public because we’re trying to expand,” says Captain Re.
Confederate Sergeant Major Bob Olin, veteran of more than 70 reenactments said, “This club started with 15 people, then it grew. There are over 1,000 in it now.”
With this many history buffs gathered in one place, campfire political discussions are inevitable. A common one, at least in the Confederate camp, is what the rebels were fighting for in the first place.
John Kirkpatrick of the 4th Texas says, “Motivations haven’t changed. People get swept up in a wave of what they call patriotism. Were we really protecting slavery? I don’t think so.”
“To have the war simplified to slavery leaves out a lot,” claims Bobosky.
Though serious history discussions happen frequently, there is still plenty of time left for comedy. In fact, a sense of humor is an unofficial requirement.
This much was made obvious through certain jokes, stories and absurdities shared by every company. The fact that most of the men have been camping and marching together in the blazing summer sun for years only makes the idea truer.
The 69th New York Infantry, for instance, bought a yellow “bonnet of shame” to be worn by the soldier who first mentions a certain old inside joke.
Joe Simple of the 4th Texas Infantry has acquired a reputation he calls “inescapable” as the battalion goofball for his tendency to stand in every company during roll call.
“I like to die three times during every battle. Three is a good number,” says Simple.
Though I was new and inexperienced, I was treated with a friendly welcome and utmost hospitality, in which the only discomfort I felt with both armies was from being overfed.
Such regards gave me a taste of the same companionship and amity that the actual soldiers may have felt many years ago.
Every member portrayed an image of unbreakable familial ties that were very real during the actual war, even if those family ties lay in rival territory.
My dad also joined the reenactment. He was, however, my enemy for the bulk of the event.
As a result, I saw my father out on the battlefield, wearing a different colored uniform, marching with a different company, and pointing a gun straight at me.
Admittedly, there was an ironic comedy to the fact that I shot my own father down in battle and watched him perform a dramatized death 30 feet away from me.
Below the surface, though, I realized our circumstances were authentic to the Civil War. Brother did fight against brother and father did fight against son; or in this case, daughter.
This war, I learned, was extremely personal. As a consequence, thousands of men and women reenact it every year to shed light on our country’s history and honor the people who fought so boldly for what we have now.
Northwest reenactments boast men who have joined the U.S. military and are currently deployed overseas due to a sense of duty instilled in them from reenacting at a young age.
They do an exemplary job. “The safety inspector is shocked that after 20 years of this, nothing bad has happened,” says Colonel Wallace of the Union army. “We have an immaculate safety record.”
“This is one of the best hobbies in the world,” Olin says.
After three days in the camps, eating, sleeping and fighting alongside some of the most genuine and pleasant men and women I’ve ever met, I whole-heartedly agree.
To find out more about the Northwest Civil War Council, visit their website at www.nwcwc.org.
For America’s Junior Miss (AJM) Scholarship Program, often times the wrong impression, misconceptions and barriers to success.
Which is why there’s a new name.
“Distinguished Young Women of America” was chosen because it reportedly better reflects the organization and its efforts to remain relevant and keep pace with the needs and interests of today’s young women.
The name change was announced during the AJM National Finals held last month in Mobile, Alabama.
“The benefits of this name is that it more accurately describes the program in a nutshell, and hopefully with the words chosen as the new name, they do not give any connotations that would make people associate it as a beauty pageant,” said Cathy Williams, the local organizer. “The program is, and always has been, a scholarship program designed to give opportunities for education to distinguished young women across America.”
Like AJM, Distinguished Young Women of America will give high school juniors a chance to present themselves in interview, on stage in a group, and on stage as individuals. Scholarship awards enhance their opportunity for continued education.
The negative about any name change is that it takes people time to recognize the new moniker. After all, AJM was in existence for more than 50 years.
“I am sure that, as with most change, there could be ‘growing pains’ in one form or another,” said Williams.