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Orren Prentiss of Stockton, San Joaquin Co., CA

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Orren Prentiss of Stockton, San Joaquin Co., CA
By Linus Joseph Dewald Jr., Editor
Summer 2005 and Revised 17 Jun 2005

Update of 17 Jun 2005: Orren is a son of Philip Fairfield Prentiss. For his ancestry, see our Fall 2001 article on Loren Prentice of MA and ME .

The following material is from the obituary of Orren Prentiss' wife:

1. Orren Prentiss was likely b. c. 1920-25.

He m. Velma Grace Mikolash. Her obituary reads as follows:

    Velma Grace (Mikolash) Prentiss, age 79, died on Thursday, April 28, 2005 after a battle with cancer. Velma was born and raised on a farm near Tyndall, South Dakota. She grew up with her two sisters and two brothers on that farm with no electricity, running water, or phone. The farmhouse and barn were built of logs in the late 1800's but, times had been good and both were upgraded with milled siding.

    Velma attended a one-room country school house, starting first grade at the age of four. She started working in town (Tyndall) at the ripe old age of 12 to provide additional income for her family, as was customary for the times. She graduated from Tyndall High in 1942. During WWII, she and her older sister, Florence (Flo) left South Dakota for new adventures in California, settling in Stockton. Velma first stayed with relatives on Market St and later moved to a small house on Hawthorne with her sister Flo and her cousin Dorothy (Dot) Fridrich. As any good sisters would, when making the long walk home from work with Dot, they enjoyed teasing and scaring their cousin along the way. Velma would talk of times in Stockton of seeing movies at the Fox Theater or attending dances at the Stockton auditorium - walking and enjoying the downtown, streets filled with people, sailors and soldiers - such different times from today.

    After the war, Velma began working for the Western Pacific Railroad as the Train Master's secretary where she eventually met and married Orren Prentiss. They bought a home in Stockton where they raised three children, Mike, Patty and Steve .

    She enjoyed many facets of life; fly fishing, camping, gardening, pinochle club, league bowling, golfing, cooking, dancing, and most of all traveling. Her traveling adventures took her to all corners of the world. Some of her favorite stops were the beauty of Alaska; climbing the Great Wall of China; almost being stranded behind the Iron Curtain; viewing the Terra Cotta Warriors; the wild beauty of Africa; the grandeur of Ancient Greece; the treasures of Eastern Europe; and even the simplicity of traveling through the splendors of America - Mount Rushmore, Crazy Horse, Yellow Stone, Glacier Park, Grand Canyon, camping and clam digging in Washington State, fall in New England, cheese in Wisconsin, lobster in Maine, and most of all visiting family and the old homestead in South Dakota.

    After retiring from the railroad, besides traveling, she also stayed active for many years as an officer of the Union Pacific Employees Club #39.

    Velma played her hand of life very well. She was preceded in death by Orren; her eldest son, Michael and her brothers, Norman and Bernard. She is survived by her sisters, Florence Immers of Reno, NV, Ruth Rezac of Dante, SD; daughter, Patricia Wehe of Stockton; son, Steven, U.S. Navy, stationed in Okinawa; grandchildren, Robert, Andrea, Tanya, Keith, Gregory, James and Rebecca and 9 great-grand-children.

    Family and friends are invited to attend a Memorial Service at 11:00 a.m., Friday, May 6, 2005 at Frisbie-Warren and Carroll, 809 N California St., Stockton. Private Interment well be held at a later date at Farmington Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the American Cancer Society, the Hospice of San Joaquin, 3888 Pacific Ave, Stockton, CA 95204 or a charity of choice.

Children of Orren and Velma:

  1. Michael Prentiss.
  2. Patty (Patricia?) Prentiss
  3. Steve (Stephen?) Prentiss

If you have any information about the folks mentioned in this article, please send your information to us at the Prentice Newsletter. Be sure to give the full title and date of this article in the Subject line of the email.

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