Passing of Carl Vogt

Carl Wallace Vogt peacefully left this earth Wednesday, February 13th at 350 pm with his wife Betty and family at his side

He ended his year long fight with Parkinson’s disease and COPD which was undoubtedly was due to his 31 years of committed service with the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection

Carl started his career in the San Diego Ranger Unit in 1950 as a Fire Firefighter I at the Julian Forest Fire Station During
his tenure, he worked in Napa Ranger Unit, Riverside Ranger Unit, Amador El Dorado Ranger Unit and finally retiring as a
State Forest Ranger I at Eel River Camp in the Humboldt Del Norte Ranger Unit in 1990

As the oldest Vogt in the CDF Carl inspired his family to serve in CDF as well. His brother Eric Vogt 1 (Retired Deputy Chief), Olga Vogt Semple (Retired Battalion Chief), brother Roger Vogt Fire Fighter I), brother in law Ken Cater (Fire Fighter 1), nephew Michael Vogt (Retired Battalion Chief), nephew Rick Vogt (current Escondido Fire Chief and CAL FIRE Battalion Chief), son Michael Webb (Assistant Fire Chief) son Jim Webb (Fire Fighter 1), and daughter Edie Vogt (Fire Fighter 1). Another generator of firefighters is up and coming

Through the toughest of times, stories and memories of CDF could always cheer him up. When asked what tie missed most about the job, “A good initial attack vegetation fire” was his response.

Carl was a loving and dedicated husband, father; grandfather, brother, uncle, great grandfather and friend. Missed by many and loved by all.

Passing of Kenneth Harp

Kenneth D. Harp passed away suddenly on February 12, 2019, at his home in Madera, CA. He was 91 years old.

Kenneth was born in Riverside, CA, on December 30, 1927. He retired from California Division of Forestry in 1969 after 25 years as Assistant Ranger. He then became the Fire Chief of Kings County for another 20 years.

Kenneth was an avid reader of his newspaper, history and politics. Upon retirement, he and his wife Evelyn travelled extensively throughout the world, visiting Australia, New Zealand, Russia, China, Africa and the many countries of Europe as well as the Caribbean, Mexico and South America. Of all his travels, he thoroughly enjoyed his tour of America’s National Parks.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers; and two sisters.

Kenneth is survived by his wife Evelyn of 69 years; and his seven children Marjorie Harp, Leslie Gheen (Kelly), Kenneth Harp (Monica), James Harp (Teri), Jeanne Harp Doel (John), John Harp (Judy) and Joan McCullough (Mac); his eight grandchildren Joseph, Russell, Mitchell, Matthew, James, Keith, Kevin and Cory; and his six great-grandchildren Brayden, Tharen, Madison, Isabella, Victoria and Ramona.

A Funeral Service will be held at Whitehurst, Sullivan, Burns & Blair Funeral Home, Chapel on Monday, February 18, 2019, at 11:00 a.m.

In lieu of flowers, remembrances may be made to Catholic Charities or the Fresno Burn Center.

Passing of James Fox

James Fraiser Fox, of Orangevale, CA, passed away at the age of 90 on Saturday, February 9, 2019.  James was born in Modesto, CA on July 6, 1928 to the late Bertha (Sweet) and Everett Fox and was the beloved husband of Mervilyn (Dunning) Fox for sixty-three years.  Services will be Saturday, February 23, 2019 at 11:30 am at Fair Oaks Church located at 11427 Fair Oaks Blvd., Fair Oaks, CA 95628.

Passing of George Waggoner

It is with great sadness that I announce the passing of retired FKU Fire Captain Gerald Waggoner.

Funeral services will be held on Tuesday February 19, 2019 @ 11:00 AM

 New Covenant Community Church

 1744 E. Nees Ave

 Clovis, CA 93720

A reception is being planned immediately following the services at New Covenant Community Church.

Passing of George Pond

Retired Battalion Chief George Pond passed away February 5, 2019. Please pray for the repose of his soul and his family. No services are planned at this time. If anyone feels inclined to do something please donate to the museum or benevolent fund in his honor.

Passing of Jerry Weaver

Jerry Sylvester Weaver, 84, of Yuma, died Jan. 16, 2019, in Yuma.

Born Nov. 1, 1934, in Stillwater, Okla., he was a crew supervisor for California State Forestry and veteran of the U.S. Air Force.

Sunset Vista Funeral Home is handling arrangements, including private cremation.

Passing of Joseph Russ IV

Joseph Russ IV passed away peacefully at home surrounded by family on January 12, 2019. He was born July 25, 1936, to Joseph and Annette Russ III. Joe was the fourth generation of an early pioneering family that dates back to the 1850s with an expansive agricultural heritage. He was a passionate spokesperson for the California livestock and timber industries. Joe was in the last graduating class of the one-room Capetown Elementary School. He went on to Ferndale High School graduating in 1953 at the age of 16. He was elected the California State FFA President in 1954 and then attended UC Davis for two years before transferring to UC Berkeley where he graduated with a degree in business administration. He loved his years playing rugby for Cal. After graduating from Cal, Joe enlisted in the U.S. Marine Corp and was assigned to a helicopter squadron and was the Honorman of his platoon. Early in 1962, Joe, his brother Jack, and Phil Branstetter went to the California Ram Sale at Cal Expo. There, he was very fortunate to meet the love of his live and devoted partner Miss Karen Lane from Clements, California. Joe and Karen were married in 1963 at Mission San Carlos in Monterey. Joe and Karen began their lives together at the Bunker Hill Ranch where they ran sheep and cattle. He was chosen to be in Class I of the first Ag Leadership Program and forever recognized the need to advocate on behalf of landowners to protect private property rights. In addition to the Bunker Hill Ranch, Joe, his father, and brother Jack, shared many fond memories running various ranches in Humboldt County and later in Modoc and Shasta Counties. Joe was passionate about the need for producers to take an active and involved interest in both the political and regulatory environment. He served in a variety of positions locally as well as at the state and national level. Locally, this included twenty years of service on the Planning Commission, President of the Humboldt Del-Norte Cattleman’s Association, Farm Bureau, and Woolgrowers. At the state level, his service included President of the State Woolgrowers, Board member of the California State Board of Forestry, as well as the State Chamber of Commerce, and the California State Fair Association. He worked with numerous Governors over the years with the highlight being Chairman for Ronald Reagan’s Northern California gubernatorial campaign. In addition, he was chosen as a delegate to the Republican National Convention several times. He received numerous awards and recognition for his service to the agricultural industry as well as for stewardship of his own operations. This included being named California Livestock Man of the Year, following in the footsteps of both his father, Joseph Russ III, and his father-in-law, Kenny Lane. Locally, he was recognized with the Buckeye Stewardship Award and Humboldt CRP Lifetime Achievement Award. Joe was a founding member of the Stockmens Bank of Commerce, the Buckeye Association, and California Rangeland Trust. Joe was instrumental in the drafting and subsequent implementation of the Williamson Act which governs agricultural property tax rates in the State of California. Even with his accomplishments, Joe was most proud of his 55 years of marriage to his wife and partner, Karen, their three children, Renee Jackson, Kathy Christiansen, and Lane Russ, and their families. All three children have followed in his footsteps and are actively involved in production agriculture. Joe was preceded in death by his father, Joseph Russ III, his mother, Annette Russ, and his brother, Jack Russ. He is survived by his wife, Karen, his three children, Renee, Kathy and Lane, his eight grandchildren – Danielle Sayler, Jessica Jackson and Russ Jackson; Rachael, Rebecca and Regan Russ; and Garrett and Clara Christiansen – as well as his sister-in-law, Linda Russ, niece, Sarah Soloaga, nephew, Jay Russ, and their families. Joe especially enjoyed watching his grandkids compete in high school rodeo, basketball, baseball and soccer. Special thanks to Hospice of Humboldt and Dianna Jacobs for the amazing care and support. In lieu of flowers, any donations should be made to the California Rangeland Trust (916) 444-2096, the Pacific Legal Foundation (916) 419-7111, or any local Future Farmers of America Program. Services will be as follows: There will be a viewing from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm followed by a Rosary at 7:00 pm on Tuesday, January 22, 2019, at the Chuch of the Assumption in Ferndale. On Wednesday January 23, 2019, at 1:00 pm there will be a Funeral Mass at the Church of the Assumption in Ferndale followed by a reception at the Ferndale Community Center from 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm. Please sign the guestbook at

Passing of Alfred Harter

Alfred Forrest Harter, 82, of Bouse, Az., passed away on December 12, 2018.

He was born to parents Howard Edmond Harter and Elza Naomi Henry Harter, on November 4, 1936, in Snoqualmie Falls, WA.

Forrest graduated from Fort Bragg High School, in Fort Bragg, CA, in 1954. He entered the US Army in 1959 and served in the Army Security Agency. Forrest began work for the California Department of Forestry in 1961 as an equipment operator and eventually become a Crew Foreman. As Crew Foreman, he ran a firefighting crew from Eel River Conservation Camp (Redway, Ca) during his last 5 years. After retirement from CDF in 1981, Forrest went on to study Industrial Arts at Humboldt State University, Arcata, CA and graduated with Masters of Arts.

Forrest enjoyed woodworking, metalworking, tinkering and generally making stuff work. In his younger years, Forrest served as a Cub Scout leader and Scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 56, in Redway, CA, in the 1970s. Forrest could often be found camping, under a vehicle hood, fixing something at a friend’s home or after retirement, at Redwood Gun Club showing up the youngsters with his WW2 rifles. He also had a passion genealogy researching his family back to the 13th century.

Forrest and Georgeann “Jan” Mae Decker were married on August 7, 1966, in Reno, NV. Together they raised children: Aaron, Jann “Sissy” Naomi, and Howard Hall.

Forrest is survived by sons Aaron and Howard Hall (Dianna), grandchildren Larissa Harter and Elizabeth, Hunter and Colton Harter, sister Naomi Harter Demayo and lifelong friend Richard “Rick” Oney.

Forrest was preceded in death by his parents Howard Edmond & Elza, wife Jan, daughter Sissy, and sisters Lael Harter Weinand and Sharon Harter Galliani.

The family has entrusted Fry Chapel Mortuary of Blythe, CA with the arrangements. A graveside service is scheduled for December 22, 2018, at 2 p.m. at Oak Hill Cemetery in Red Bluff, CA.


Passing of Walter Watton

Walter H. Watton passed away on October 15, 2018 at his home in Yreka. He was 77 years old. Walt was born in Eau Claire, Wisconsin to Richard and Esther Watton. He was one of seven children, survived by his only sister, Ramona Doran. Walt joined the U.S. Navy, which landed him in San Diego. While there, he met the love of his life Judith Stark, whom he married in 1965. He is the beloved father or three, Ramona, Richard, and Rhonda. He also has seven treasured grandchildren and two adored great grandchildren.

Walt was a hard working man that put in and retired after 25 years with the California Department of Forestry, where they nicknamed him as “Pappy.” He put in 42 years with the Elks Lodge, where he joined in El Cajon Lodge #1812 in 1976, demitted and transferred to Yreka Lodge #1980 in 1983. In 1999, Walt became an Honorary Life Member.

Walt Enjoyed traveling, chili cook–offs, and devoted his time to helping others. He loved his family above all else. He was understanding, non judgmental, and enjoyed life to the fullest. Walt lost his battle to cancer, and will be missed by many. there will be a memorial held at the Yreka Elks Lodge #1980 on Monday Oct. 29, 2018 at 2:00 p.m. Bar opens at 1:00 p.m.

Online condolences may be made at Girdner Funeral Chapel is assisting the family.