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William Wortham (Bill) Jenkins


1925 - 2013 Obituary Condolences
William Wortham (Bill) Jenkins Obituary
William (Bill) Wortham Jenkins 1925 - 2013 William (Bill) Wortham Jenkins died June 7, 2013 in Thousand Oaks, CA. Bill was born June 27, 1925 at Ft. Leavenworth, Kansas. His father, a career Army Officer, moved his family a few years later to the Army War College in Washington D. C., where he instructed officers. Among his students was Dwight D. Eisenhower. His father died in 1931. Bill, his mother, brother Coleman, and sister Nancy traveled to California via the Panama Canal to be near his mother's family in Los Angeles. Bill attended Angeles Mesa Elementary, Audubon Junior High, and Manual Arts High. He earned his BA at Occidental College and MA at USC. Bill enlisted in the Navy in 1943 during WW11. After graduating from the NROTC program at the University of New Mexico, he served as Engineering and Mine Warfare Officer in the Pacific until his discharge in 1946. He was recalled in 1951 to serve two years in the Korean War as Senior Watch and Gunnery Officer on the DeHaven and Gregory destroyers. He was a Lieutenant at discharge. Bill married Ruby Johnson in 1946, his high school girlfriend. They had two children: Janet Lorelle (1951), and James (Jim) Charles (1952). Janet married Don Van Vliet, a musician and artist. Jim, an avid hiker, authored several outdoor books before he was killed in an auto accident in 1979 at age 27. Mount Jenkins in the Southern Sierra was named for him. Ruby died in 2007. Bill joined the Los Angeles School District as a teacher in 1949. He quickly went into administration serving either as vice principal or principal at four junior or senior high schools. He transferred to Beverly Hills School District in 1969. Bill retired as Assistant Superintendent in 1982. Bill and his wife moved to the mountain village of Kernville, CA in 1987. Bill's extensive administrative experience was useful to the many Kern River Valley organizations in which he became involved. He was president of the Kern River Valley Historical Society for three years and served on the board for many more years. Bill organized the Kern River Valley Hiking Club, and for 17 years he and Ruby led hundreds of people on hikes in the Southern Sierra. No memorial service. Donations, if considered, to: Kern River Valley Historical Society, Scholarship fund POB 651, Kernville, CA 93238-0651. www.bakersfield.com/obits
Published in Bakersfield Californian on June 30, 2013
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