James (Jim) Morford Garretson

James (Jim) Morford Garretson[1, 2]

Male 1921 - 2012  (90 years)

Personal Information    |    Notes    |    Sources    |    All    |    PDF

  • Name James (Jim) Morford Garretson 
    Born 13 Aug 1921  Grantsville, Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 4
    Gender Male 
    Died 13 Feb 2012  Grantsville, Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 4
    Buried Bethlehem Cemetery, Grantsville, Calhoun, West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  [3, 4
    Person ID P1745  Robert Jackson
    Last Modified 5 Jul 2020 

    Father Oscar Lee Garretson,   b. 16 Jan 1890, Calhoun County, West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 3 Dec 1968, Wood County, West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 78 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Mother Dollie Florence Jackson,   b. 3 Jul 1895, Big Springs, Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 16 Aug 1977, Grantsville, Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location  (Age 82 years) 
    Relationship natural 
    Married 20 Oct 1917  Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Family ID F324  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

    Family Nona Olive Bower,   b. 18 May 1919, Henrietta, Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location,   d. 27 Aug 1982  (Age 63 years) 
    Married 23 May 1950  Calhoun Co., West Virginia Find all individuals with events at this location 
    Children 
     1. Living
     2. Living
     3. Living
    Last Modified 5 Jul 2020 
    Family ID F325  Group Sheet  |  Family Chart

  • Notes 
    • The Hur Herald online: http://www.hurherald.com/obits.php?id=47219 (this has his picture also)

      James Morford Garretson, 90 - Grantsville
      (02/13/2012)
      James Morford Garretson, 90, of Grantsville, West Virginia, passed away February 13, 2012 at Minnie Hamilton Health System in Grantsville.

      He was born August 13, 1921 in Grantsville a son of the late Oscar Lee and Dollie Jackson Garretson.

      He was a graduate of Calhoun County High School, was a WWII Veteran and was retired from the US Postal Service in Grantsville and was a former employee of the Calhoun County Board of Education.

      He was a member of the American Legion, Eureka Lodge #40 A.F. & A.M. in Grantsville and the Nemesis Shrine Temple in Parkersburg WV and a member of Knotts Memorial United Methodist Church.

      Surviving are three children, Elizabeth (Mike) Leisure of Parkersburg, James Lee (Sheila) Garretson of Grantsville, Susan J. Garretson of Ceredo WV; three stepchildren, Delores (Ed) Leggett of Columbus OH, Robert (Des) Bower of Howell MI, and Roy "Dink" (Mary) Bower of Little Creek WV; one niece, Dorothy Jean Turley of Hurricane WV; 10 grandchildren, 11 great grandchildren and several great-great grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

      In addition to his parents he was preceded in death by his wife, Nona Bower Garretson; and one sister, Juanita Garretson Reese.

      Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 17 at Stump Funeral Home in Grantsville with Rev. Alfred Hickman officiating. Interment will be in the Bethlehem Cemetery.

      ****

      REMEMBERING: WWII VET JIM GARRETSON GAVE YEARS OF SERVICE TO CAREER CENTER

      Calhoun's James M. Garretson died in Feb. 2012 at the age of 90, a story written about him in 1998:
      By Theodore Webb, Parkersburg Sentinel Editor

      James Garretson is “hard of hearing.”

      However, this obstacle has not kept 76 year old Garretson from serving his country in World War II, nor his disability prevented him from giving over 20 years of service to his community as a postal mail carrier and custodian at the Calhoun-Gilmer Career Center.

      Garretson’s life began on August 13, 1921. He was born to Oscar and Dolly Garretson in the middle of Grantsville in Calhoun County on Mill Street. When Garretson was about 5 years old, his parents discovered that he had a hearing problem.

      “I had suffered a bout of scarlet fever,” Garretson explains. “But, I think my hearing loss was probably hereditary. Both of my daughters have hearing problems.”

      Throughout his life, Garretson would never hear like other people.

      Though not completely deaf, the young Garretson could not hear low sounds. As a child, he learned how to read other people’s lips.

      Like others of his generation, Garretson came of age during the profound economic depression of the 1930s.

      “During the Depression, we had plenty to eat because we kept a garden,” remembers Garretson. “But, we had to wear all our clothes as long as possible, usually till they wore out.”

      It was during the Great Depression that Garretson completed studies at Grantsville Grade School before graduating from Calhoun County High School in 1940.

      “Those were good old days," Garretson was called to service in World War II. “When the doctors gave me my physical, they didn’t realize that I was nearly deaf.”

      Garretson elaborates, “I could speak and read lips, so I was able to answer their questions. If I hadn’t wanted to go to the war, I probably could have gotten out of it.”

      After being called away from his Calhoun County home, Garretson spent a week in Fort Knox, Kentucky and completed his basic training in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

      He then went to a “staging area” in South Carolina and rode a train across the continent to California where he was “shipped out.”

      “We rode to war on a giant ship,” says Garretson.” About 10,000 men rode over on bunks four men high. We went through New Zealand, Australia, and Bombay, India to North Africa. The whole trip took 42 days.”

      Garretson’s group took the Suez Canal to Alexandria, Egypt where they joined the British English Army. During the war, Garretson handled ordinance for the Army Air Corps, the forerunner of the modern U.S. Air Force. From Egypt, Garretson’s unit went to Libya, Tunisia, Corsica, and Italy.

      “At one point we were stationed in Pompei,” says Garretson. “I was on guard duty when Mt. Vesuvius erupted. The volcano covered all of our tents, trucks, and equipment with three feet of ash. It looked like the end of the world.”

      Another harrowing experience exploded when the Germans bombed Garretson’s unit at about 2:00 a.m. in May 1944.

      “We were in Corsica at the time.” Garretson relates. “The allies were ready to march to Berlin. We all thought the war was over.” According to Garretson, the bombing raid wiped out every plane on the field. “We hadn’t dug foxholes,” Garretson recalls vividly.

      “All we could do was lay flat on the ground and hope we wouldn’t be killed.”

      “It was a different age then,” Garretson says of the war. “We were all young. We all felt like we were doing something important to sign up for battle, patriotic I guess. I remember in grade school we would salute the flag and say the pledge of allegiance every morning before class.”

      After the war in Europe ended Garretson was shipped back to the United States where his poor hearing was finally considered by the army.

      “The doctor giving me the physical asked me how in the hell I got in the war.” Garretson quips, “I told him I just got on the boat and followed the rest of the boys.”

      The appeared in the Hur Herald on 15 Feb 2013

      Inscription on grave marker:
      JAMES M GARRETSON
      CPL U S ARMY
      WORLD WAR II
      AUG 13 1921 FEB 13 2012

  • Sources 
    1. [S347984978] Book: Who Am I - A Genealogical Study of the Bower, Taylor & Related Families, Carpenter, Mary Bower, (McClain Printing Co., Parsons, West Virginia 1986), 0-9617470-0-5., Page 67.

    2. [S347984971] Personal Knowledge.
      Jim was a first cousin.

    3. [S347984726] Obituary, James Garretson Feb 2012.

    4. [S347984674] Find A Grave Website, (http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi), Memorial# 99633473.
      http://www.findagrave.com/cgi-bin/fg.cgi?page=gr&GRid=99633473



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