Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Update: Gordon and James Waggoner

Thanks to Louella Stilley from the Kootenai (Idaho) County Genealogical Society, I've learned that my Grandma Mary’s brother Gordon Waggoner’s cause of death was pneumonia. Louella found this information in county cemetery records.[1] Now we know.
As for James, Gordon’s son, there was more to his life than a handsome face and many wives.  During World War II, he served in the US Army as a Tec 4. I had to look that up. According to Answers, Tec 4s were non-commissioned officers, usually with the rank of sergeant, who served as radiomen or mechanics or cook or tank drivers or in other special capacities, either combat or non-combat. His specialty is yet to be known and as far as we know, he never served overseas.
According to his granddaughter, Suzanne, her Grandpa Jim’s career was in real estate.[2] A couple of articles I found in the Seattle Daily Times add evidence to this. The first is an ad dated June 18, 1967, calling for young men wanting to “rise above ‘punching a clock’” to apply for training in real estate sales. The ad particularly focuses on opportunities for land development in Arizona and promises a salary of $200.00 per week while being trained. The name on the ad is James Waggoner, Holly Development Company of Washington.[3]
On a sadder note, an article in the The Seattle Times describes an accident in that city on May 7, 1964. A child named Vicki Lynn Nelson, age 7, ran out from behind a parked car into the path of an oncoming vehicle and was struck and fatally injured. The driver of the car was James Waggoner, age 45, real estate agent. That was the age and career of our James about that time.[4] What a tragedy this must have been for all involved!
At his death in December 1994, James was buried in Willamette National Cemetery in Portland, Oregon. I love the inscription on his tombstone: “I Am Not Contained Between My Hat and My Boots.” It seems to confirm Jacquie Mitchell’s characterization of him as happy regardless of circumstances.
James G. Waggoner tombstone, Willametter National Cemetery, Portland, Oregon. [5]

[1] Stilley, Louella, Coeur d'Alene, Idaho,  E-mail from [(E-ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE),] to Zola Troutman Noble, e-mail, 15 September 2013, “Kootenai Genealogy,” Research/Kootenai folder, privately held by Noble, [E-ADDRESS & ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Anderson, Indiana, 2013.
[2] Hansen, Suzanne, Portland, Oregon,  E-mail from [(E-ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE),] to Zola Troutman Noble, e-mail, 20 September 2013, “Grandpa Jim’s Occupation,” Ancestry/Suzanne folder; privately held by Noble, [E-ADDRESS & ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE], Anderson, Indiana, 2013.
[3] “Lake Havasu City: the Big Project,” advertisement, The Seattle Daily Times, 18 June 1967, p. 65, col. 6.
[4] “7-year-old Struck by Auto,” The Seattle Times, 7 May 1964, p. 6, col. 2, database and image ( : accessed 20 September 2013); search term James Waggoner. “Injuries Fatal to Girl 7 Struck by Auto,” 8 May 1965, p. 20, col. 4.; search term Vicki Nelson. “Vicki Nelson Funeral,” The Seattle Times, 8 May 1965, p. 37, col. 5.
[5] Raylene Lapierre Lehnhoff, photo used by permission, member number 47866810, Find A Grave ( : accessed 18 September 2013).

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