100 years ago
May 1, 1919 — New Victory Flag Floats in Redmond
To towns which have filled their Victory loan subscriptions, a flag is given as a mark of honor. Redmond is one of these, and this flag now holds the post of honor on the flagstaff at the head of Main street. When it comes to fulfilling a patriotic duty, Redmond never quits until that duty is fully discharged. It is a good town because of the enterprising character of her business men.
75 years ago
May 4, 1944 — Lad of 14 Admits Setting Huge Fire
Fire set by a 14-year-old Redmond boy because he “just couldn’t help it” spread to a blast of flames which destroyed Redmond union high school gymnasium Monday, causing damage estimated at $40,000. Only the valiant efforts of firemen who battled the blaze for two hours, from 5 to 7 p.m., saved the remainder of the building.
The boy, who was in the custody of police as a suspect before the fire siren sounded, signed a confession Monday evening, local and state officers said, admitting his guilt. He also confessed to other previous attempts at arson in the school building, two on April 4, two last Friday and two Saturday.
When the most recent attempts occurred, local authorities telephoned Salem Capt. H.W. Howard, state police officer with the arson division, and H.H. Pomeroy, representative of the National Board of Fire Underwriters, were sent to Redmond to assist with the investigation. They arrived at about 1 o’clock Monday afternoon, and with the Chief of Police Athel Dudley, Fire Chief John Berning and central Oregon state police officers, went to the school.
Evidence incriminating the boy was discovered during the afternoon, and he was taken into custody at 4:35 p.m. probably not more than five minutes after the fire had been started. According to his confession, the lad went out the building by the front door, having been a little late in leaving school. Going to the back of the building he re-entered through the door to the gymnasium upstairs into the classroom section of the building. The officers, who were looking for him, took him to the police office, having obtained permission to question him.
Borden F. Beck, agriculture instructor, turned in the alarm; with Redmond’s two pumpers responding instantly, but by that time smoke was pouring from the roof of the gymnasium. Seriousness of the fire was evident at once and Redmond army air base sent one of its pumpers to aid the Redmond firemen.
50 years ago
May 7, 1969 — Organization being formed to promote welfare liaison
With the hope of establishing liaison between individuals or organizations who would like to volunteer some of their time and effort toward giving assistance to those who need it, Redmond Community Service is being formed.
First need of the organization is to have contact with persons willing and able to occasionally provide such things as transportation, clothing, furniture and appliances and child-care service to others in need.
Transportation, in the sense intended, might amount to such as driving someone to the doctor, the welfare office, grocery shopping or church. Contributions would include usable furniture, clean and wearable clothing and so on. Child care might enable a mother to keep an appointment with the doctor or dentist, or occasionally an emergency case.
Redmond Community Service will catalog proffered gifts or services and, when needs become known, act to put volunteers in touch with those in need.
25 years ago
May 4, 1994 — Gov. Roberts commends climber
A Central Oregon man received a letter of commendation from Gov. Barbara Roberts at a fund-raising dinner following the recent Earth Day Spring Clean-up at Smith Rock State Park.
The governor praised Alan Watts for establishing Smith Rock as an internationally acclaimed rock climbing park, through his own climbing and publication of his “Climber’s Guide to Smith Rock.”
Roberts also cited his contribution to the Central Oregon economy. Watts is president of a climbing-related business. His firm and others specializing in the sport employ more than 60 people with gross sales of $4-5 million dollars.
Earth Day Clean-up participants, including German and Japanese visitors, planted 100 trees, scattered native grass seeds to revegetate eroded canyon slopes, built and improved trails, installed a second rescue litter in the canyon and picked up trash.