Every once in a while I read another person’s blog and because of my newspaper project I can add to the story by providing the actual newspaper account. This is one of those times.
On Feb 21, 2013 gpcox posted an entry called “ Pacific Theater continues ” in which he gives us some interesting short items about the war in the Pacific. One of those items told about the balloon bombs sent out by Japan and how one of those made it to Oregon. He writes:
… 5 May 1945 – near Klamath Falls, Oregon, a pregnant woman, Elyse Mitchell and five students were killed on their way to a picnic. These were the only casualties of the war in the 48 states.
I had heard about these balloon bombs and knew that they had caused some damage here in the USA but I was not familiar with the particular information gpcox was mentioning in his piece. Since I have a data base of state newspapers I can go to the state collection and see if there is a newspaper for the time period that has the story that is being discussed. I did just that and found this:
Six Persons Killed
In Oregon Blast
Lakeview, Ore., May 7 (UP)
The sheriff’s office at Lakeview today was investigating the explosion of an unidentified object which late Saturday killed a woman and five children some 15 miles east of Bly.
Those killed were:
Mrs. Archie (Elyse) Mitchell of Lakeview,
Sherman Shoemaker age 12
Jay Gifford age 12
Eddie Engen age 13
Joan Patzke age 11
Dick Patzke age 13
The Rev. Archie Mitchell, accompanying his wife and the children on the outing, was a slight distance away from the others when the accident occurred. He was uninjured.
Here is the link to that item:
The Bulletin – May 7, 1945
The Bend Bulletin, Bend, Deschutes County, Oregon
May 7, 1945