World Gone By 4/28


75 years ago, April 28, 1938

• As sort of a birthday cake, L. Gustafson, 1100 East Wishkah St., has built himself a 26-foot cabin cruiser to mark a milestone in his boat-building career. It is the “Ru-Ce” and it is his 100th craft.

Mr. Gustafson started boat building five years ago as a sparetime hobby. He kept selling them as fast as they were completed until a hobby turned into a virtual business.

He sold two boats the first year but from then on he turned out an average of 20 to 25 a years, all sizes and shapes from nine-foot skiffs to 30-foot power boats.

They have gone all over the country, one even taking the eye of a Dutch deepwater skipper, who saw a 16-footer in Gustafson’s yard and ordered it delivered to his ship at the port terminal an hour later. The ship was the Zaanland, one of the few Dutch craft ever in Grays Harbor.

• In all their spring glory, a half dozen ancient pear trees are blooming on the banks of the Wishkah River as a living memorial to Samuel Benn, founder of Aberdeen.

The trees are the remains of a large orchard planted by the late Sam Benn some 68 years ago. Each year, despite their age, the ancient and mossy memorials burst forth with a white cloud of blossoms, and each fall are heavy with fruit.

50 years ago, April 28, 1963

Sunday, no newspaper published

25 years ago, April 28, 1988

• The one-man crime spree that touched Grays Harbor so dramatically Easter weekend ended in tragedy Wednesday when a young fugitive took his own life.

Jerrold Esarey Jr., 21, shot himself in the head after fleeing from police who spotted him at a fast food restaurant at Ellensburg.

The man police say robbed the Aberdeen Burger King April 2 died at St. Elizabeth Medical Center in Yakima after emergency surgery.

• Lt. Col. Richard Reynolds, a 1967 Aberdeen High School graduate and this year’s Distinguished Alumnus, talked to Jim Coon’s third period physics class.

The hardest work he remembered is running lines for then basketball coach Dick Dixon and running track for Al Bivens.

“And the third was test pilot school. It was 10 1/2 months full of flying, academics, exams and reports. But I can’t remember a time in my life that I had more fun.”

Compiled by Karen Barkstrom from the archives of The Daily World.