Otris's Story

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Today we mourn the passing of a friend, a patriot, a gentle soul, an honorable man. Chief Warrant Officer Otris Jorden, 98, of Danville, California passed away December 1, 2017. OJ, as his friends referred to him, is survived by a daughter, Brenda Jordan of Los Angles, CA, son Otris Eugene Jordan of Los Angeles (preceded him in death 2010); two grandsons, Christopher Jordan of Los Angeles. His wife Ruby Jordan, preceded him death in 2016; her survivors and his extended family consist of two daughters, Janet of Alaska and Sherrie Gibson of Sacramento, a granddaughter and three great grandsons. Loving friends Lonnie and David Bullington of Litchfield. Goddaughter, Sandra Smith who cared for him the last four years of his life in Danville, Ca.

He fought in World War II. He went into the tunnels on Pacific islands looking for the last hidden Japanese soldiers. It takes a very brave man to go into a hole when there are armed men waiting for you. After the war was over he went back to college and started his own electrical business in Texas. He did local businesses, VA facilities and Army post buildings. One day when he was working on a job on the post he came across a couple of soldiers trying to get a radio system to work. He overheard their conversation and walked up and asked if he could be of help. The sergeant said sure why not they were not having any success. OJ got the radio fixed and the sergeant, being a First Shirt, was impressed and asked him to help with other electronic troubles. Things didn't work out in the civilian world for OJ and recruiting was beginning to increase because of the Korean action. OJ re-enlisted and became a Warrant Officer. He worked on several different projects, the Turkey radio farms during the cold war, the radio farms in Africa and retired while working on communications systems in Alaska.

He was a veteran of three wars, WWII, Korea and Vietnam. It has been an honor to know this man, to follow his example that we are all the same color, to judge a person by their conduct not their skin. To see the potential of a human being.

We will miss his kindness and wisdom, his bravery to fight the odds and not let the world destroy his outlook on what a decent and good life should be. We will not forget this hero, this unsung hero, a Texan, a Black man, a Warrior, who helped people see that there are better ways to live out your life, than to succumb to bigotry and prejudice.

Interment at California Central Coast Veterans Cemetery in Seaside, California.
Published on December 28, 2017
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