|Birth: ||Aug. 18, 1926|
|Death: ||Oct. 20, 2002|
I was born on August 18th, 1926 in Safford, Graham County, Arizona. I believe I was born at home, in a house close to the old Morris Squibb Hospital. I was the third child of Silas Larson and Clara Maude Allred Larson. Our family consisted of Herman S. born August 13, l917, Farrell Clinton born March 1, 1920, myself and my younger sister Kathryn born November 15, 1928.
My earliest childhood memories were in Pima, Arizona. My family in the years prior to 1932 lived with my grandmother Allred on her 40 acre farm east of Pima, this was during the great depression. I always looked back on this as some of the best times in my life, because all my aunts and uncles and cousins lived together on this farm. Grandma Allred had lots of livestock and ground to raise gardens so we could all take care of ourselves properly.
Dad, in about 1935, bought a piece of ground south of the old main street across the railroad tracks where he eventually built our first real home (in my recollection). It was at this home that I have most of my school days memories. I remember when I was in the first grade in 1932, I was a member of one of the largest classes Pima had ever had. There was around 52 of us more or less. We would continue as classmates through most of our lives and became almost like a family. I enjoyed school and most of the subjects, especially spelling and mathematics. I had a great love for sports and music. However, since it was more popular to be a good athlete, I spent more energy at this than I did music because there was a conflict. They took place at the same time. I've always regretted that I couldn't have spent equal time at both.
Since I was large for my age and told by my coaches that I possessed good athletic ability, I excelled in football, basketball, and baseball. People would sometimes ask me which sport I enjoyed the most. My answer was usually "which ever one was in season".
In 1942, my second year in high school, my family moved to Phoenix for my dad to enter the Real Estate business. It was a fun adventure for me since I was now in a BIG school and made lots of new friends. I hooked up with my friend and cousin, C.F. and his girl friend, Jackie Hudlow. She only lived about a block from C.F. and we lots of fun at Jackie's house, playing the phonograph and dancing to music from the big bands, mostly Glenn Miller We also double dated at times, and would go to Riverside Ballroom down in South Phoenix, when some of the big bands came to town. Just as I was adjusting to life in the big city, my mother got homesick for Pima, and we moved back. My dad wasn't too happy about this, as he was doing quite well in Real Estate. So back to Pima we went, Mom, Dad, Kathryn and I, Farrell was already married and my oldest brother Herman had been killed in a car accident in San Carlos in 1938 when he was only 21 years old. This was a great and tragic loss to our family.
World War II had broken out in December of 1941 and in March of 1943, I talked my parents into signing for me to go into the Navy. Although I was only a little over 16 years old, I was large for my age and felt it was the patriotic thing to do. (People were patriotic in those days!) I went to boot camp at San Diego Naval Training Station and later was assigned to the destroyer base in San Diego. When I finished gunnery school at the destroyer base I received orders to go to San Pedro, California to board my first assigned ship. I was to be a member of the Armed Guard (which is Naval Personnel who manned the guns and stood lookout duty on Merchant Marine ships). My first ship was the S.S. Sinclair Rubilene, a tanker belonging to the Sinclair Oil Company. Our first trip was to Pearl Harbor and then back to the States. I was pretty nervous as we went to sea. I was sure every white cap that I saw (and there were many) was the wake of a submarine periscope, of course it wasn't. I got to know my shipmates quite well and really quite liked Navy service. All total in next 32 months I was at sea 24 months total. I visited 20 some odd islands and countries. I saw India, Australia, Venezuela, and most of the islands in the South Pacific. I went through the Panama Canal several times. Since we were refueling destroyers that were fighting battles all over the South Pacific. I crossed the equator on my 17th birthday and was initiated into the order of "Domain of Neptunus Rex" 18th of August 1943. I later served on S.S. Peter Moran, a liberty ship and then on the S. S. Agwiprince.
After being discharged, I went back to Pima & took it easy for a while & then enrolled in Gila Junior College (now Eastern Arizona). I majored in Business and minored in Physical Education. I had the opportunity to play football with one of the school's finest ever teams. We ended up 4th in the nation among Junior Colleges. Since this was right after the war, most of the team had been to war. They were all anxious to get back to civilian life & football. This determination helped with the great success we had.(we were all Arizona boys but one!)
It really seemed good to be back in the civilian world, although I did enjoy very much most of the experiences I had while in the Navy, and especially enjoyed the ocean. I got to see the sea in many different conditions. Most of them were from pretty to absolutely beautiful except for the time I was in a hurricane near Panama and since I survived, even some of that was quite an adventure.
But back to College days and the fun it was to renew acquaintances with old friends and make lots of new friends. I did enjoy people and would have to say I am a people person. Besides using my GI benefits to go to college, I also learned to fly, obtaining a private pilots license. My instructor was Marland Marshall, a WWII P 38 pilot. Flying was an awful lot of fun in my life.
I met a cute little girl from Safford, her name was Laura Rowley, she and I were together a lot of the time. We met at a dance (the Christmas Ball) at Gila Jr. College and it could be called love at first sight.
We eventually bought our first house in the Jensen addition on the east side of Safford and enjoyed the time we spent there. I worked at different jobs, such as Sears, Safford Packing Co., Graham Co. Sheriff's office under H. "Skeet" Bowman. He was one of the finest men I have ever known.
Our first two children, Janet & John were born in Safford. In 1952, about four months after John was born, we moved to Phoenix, Arizona for me to go into the Real Estate business. I worked with Gastineau Realty Co. under a broker, Keith Gastineau. Our first home in Phoenix was at 2237 N. 11th Street. Although I tried quite hard to make a success in Real Estate, there just wasn't enough business to make a living. In 1953, I applied for and was accepted as a police officer for the Phoenix City police
During my career as a police officer, I worked with many wonderful people. I had the opportunity to work in several divisions. I worked on the "Paddy" wagon, traffic investigator, radio dispatcher and for many years as a plain clothes detective in the forgery and bogus check detail. The last couple of years before retirement, I worked at Sky Harbor airport with the police detail there. Some of the highlights I remember were chasing after Bahama bulls. I even roped one that turned back on me and almost got me. Luckily a motorcycle policeman chased him away. (So much for cowboy Jay!) These bulls broke out of the corrals by the train depot where they were held for the rodeo.
From 1962 to 1965, I left the department to go to work as an agent for State Farm Insurance Co. My office was at Thomas Mall (which no longer exists). I really enjoyed the insurance business. Our last child, Kent was born in Phoenix during this time period.
Although I enjoyed my work with State Farm and the people I associated with, after careful consideration I decided to return to police work and rejoined the Phoenix Police department in 1965. In 1968, in order to get our youngest son into public schools, it was necessary to move to Graham County. I accepted the position of police chief in Pima and also jointly served as a deputy for the County to answer calls in the west end of the county. I again worked with my long time friend H. "Skeet " Bowman. This was quite an experience for me and my family. We bought a horse, a 2 year old gelding called Bingo, which Laura and John enjoyed very much. Laura spoiling him and John enjoyed having his very own horse. After five months, I returned to the Phoenix police department. The Phoenix school system would now accept Kent because he was transferring from another public system. I was able to pick up my seniority and retirement benefits. This proved beneficial to us for our later years.
We bought a house at 3025 E. Mitchell Dr. on the end of a cul de sac. We enjoyed this house for the next 12 years. It had a large back yard where eventually we built a kidney shaped pool. This was mostly for the therapeutic value for Kent, but he was nice enough to let us use it too.
In 1978, I retired from the Phoenix Police Department. I enjoyed my retirement years in Phoenix but in 1980 we decided to move to Utah. We bought a lot in a town called Sandy.
I feel I can truly say I have thoroughly enjoyed life, I know I have received a lot in life. But I also like to think I have contributed lots to life and to my fellow man. I think I am sensitive, compassionate, and try to understand the other man's feelings. I'm not the greatest person but I think that I'm a fairly decent person. I've loved my wife, children, parents, brothers and sisters (and that includes my in-laws). I hope my posterity through the years can find a way to contribute to the world's people and their needs. I especially am grateful to my dear wife, Laura for helping me prepare this autobiography.
Jay Warren Larson, 1999
Silas Larson (1892 - 1965)
Clara M Allred Larson (1898 - 1987)
Laura Jean Rowley Larson (1929 - 2001)
Herman S. Larson (1917 - 1938)*
J Warren Larson (1926 - 2002)
Larkin Sunset Gardens Cemetery
Salt Lake County
Created by: Janet Larson Dansie
Record added: Sep 11, 2010
Find A Grave Memorial# 58524412
What a beautiful tribute to your Dad.May he rest in eternal peace.|
Added: Apr. 20, 2013
Also Thank you for your service as a police officer and so much more.|
Added: Apr. 20, 2013
Thank you for your service to your country.|
Added: Apr. 20, 2013
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