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War Department reports Major Rex Barber, of Culver, missing in China in May 1944.

MADRAS PIONEER LOGO - The Madras Pioneer looks back over the past 100 years of newspaper archives.100 YEARS AGO

May 22, 1919

Saturday was a banner day for Madras and Jefferson County, this year, they being the entertainers in the tri-county field day and declamatory meeting and contest in which the counties of Crook, Deschutes and Jefferson each year come together in a friendly contest.

The day was ideal, being comfortably warm, yet not hot, and no wind or dust of consequence moving. This report is not taken from anything official and may contain slight errors in some parts, but it is the best available at this time.

The medals to be awarded the winning contestants failed to arrive in time for the meeting, but have since been received, but we are informed they do not comply with the order placed and will probably be returned to the manufacturer and others demanded which will make further delay in final delivery. Winners however may rest assured that the medals will be forthcoming in time.

In the athletic events, Arthur Tuck, of Redmond, carried away many of the firsts, but was closely seconded by John and Dick Young, of Madras, who succeeded in wresting from the Redmond wonder several firsts, and who were second in most all of the other events in which they contested.

Tuck is a wonderful boy, and has a very bright athletic future if properly handled. A crowd estimated at from 2,000 to 3,000 persons was in attendance and the day was spent most enjoyably by everyone present. The only unpleasant thing that developed for the day was the failure of Deschutes County to hold elimination contests in athletics.

She came to Madras on the day of the meet with four contestants for each athletic event in which she contested one from each of her principal towns, and assisted in putting them all into one contest against one for each from Crook and Jefferson counties.

This naturally caused much dissatisfaction but was finally compromised by the Deschutes delegation being permitted to place two contestants in each event against one from each of the other counties. This was only agreed to after Deschutes had threatened to pull out and abandon the meeting.


May 18, 1944

SUBMITTED PHOTO - In the spring of 1944, the parents of Rex Barber, a fighter pilot from Culver serving in the Pacific theater, were notified that their son has been reported as missing in action since April 29. (His plane was shot down and he bailed out over China, was treated by Chinese civilians and returned after five weeks.) 
Wednesday morning, May 17, Mr. and Mrs. W.C. Barber, pioneer residents of Culver, received a telegram from the United States War Department stating that their son, Major Rex Barber, had been missing in action in the China theater of operations since last April 29. No further details were included in the message.

Major Barber had just recently received his promotion from a captaincy, and had been commended a number of times for his distinguished services as a fighter pilot. Major Barber was awarded the Navy Cross in 1943, also the Silver Star, and Oak Leaf Cluster are among other citations attesting to his ability and kill. He had seen action in various combat zones, and was recently transferred from India to China.

Major Barber is 27 years of age, and was born May 6, 1917. He was graduated from Culver High School, and attended school at Linfield two years, and also spent two years at Oregon State College at Corvallis.

When he was back in the United States, a little over one year ago, Rex was married in San Francisco, California. His wife and son, born recently to the couple, reside there now.

Besides the parents, Mr. and Mrs. W.C. Barber, Culver, Major Barber has two sisters, May Elizabeth, teacher in the Redmond school; and Mrs. Eileen Olsen of San Francisco, California.

Major Barber is well-known in this community and had gained national fame through his heroism. It is sincerely hoped that the possibility of rescue or safe landing may be reported soon. Such things have occurred during war time, and hope should be held forth until further confirmation is forthcoming from authorities.


May 22, 1969

Development and restoration of a typical old-time farmstead on a tract set aside for the purpose at the Jefferson County Fairgrounds is coming close to reality, members of the Jefferson County Museum announced following a luncheon meeting at the Towne House Wednesday last week.

The old H. Ward Farrell farm dwelling had earlier been donated to the nonprofit museum corporation, and John Campbell, president, who has been working on the project, said that the structure would be ready to move in about a month.


May 19, 1994

History will be made and a tradition started this Saturday with the First Annual Collage of Culture.

The event — a sunrise to nightfall cultural extravaganza at the Madras Junior High grounds — is a celebration of our heritage, our community, and ourselves.

Jefferson County has long been somewhat of a melting pot. The Warm Springs Indian Reservation is home for people of three Indian tribes (the Wasco, Paiute and Warm Springs). In the first decades of the 20th century, Anglos homesteaded in the county, rail lines were laid, and the communities of Madras, Culver and Metolius were formed.

In the last half of the century, Hispanic families, many of them migrants drawn to the area by its farm-based economy, began arriving in Jefferson County. Many stayed and made their lives here.

The three cultures — Native American, Anglo and Hispanic — have melded to become one community. Our children go to the same schools, we shop in the same stores, and we drive the same streets.

The evolution of our community has not been without racial tensions, injustice or heartbreak. But on Saturday, we'll celebrate tolerance and respect for each other. Together, we'll show our pride in our community.

The Collage of Culture springs forth through the vision and effort of the Madras-Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce, with the help of many volunteers. Saturday may indeed be a watershed day for Jefferson County, a high mark in the evolution and maturity of our community.

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