"Les" Medford was born in Annapolis, Maryland to Col. E. Leslie Medford and Emma Virginia Medford. He enjoyed spending most of his childhood playing lacrosse or tennis and visiting his father who worked at the Maryland State Capitol building. His father served in the Maryland National Guard; in his honor the Annapolis armory is named. In college Les played lacrosse and basketball for St. John's College (graduated 1939) and is recognized as a "Lacrosse All-American". |
Prior to Pearl Harbor, Les joined the United States Marine Corps as part of an Officers' Training Class at Quantico, Virginia. Immediately after the attack at Pearl Harbor, this young lieutenant sailed out of San Diego harbor on the first troop ship headed for the South Pacific with orders to join the 7th Marine Defense Battalion in Western Samoa. While serving at Pearl Harbor he met and married his wife, Marie. His final duty position was at the Naval Post Graduate School (Monterey, CA) as the instructor for "Amphibious Landings". All who knew him recognized his special affection for the Marine Corp and his devotion to the Samoan people which was cherished for a lifetime.
After retiring with 22 years of service from the Marine Corps in 1961 he embarked on a second career in University Administration at the University of the Pacific. He worked in Registration and Admissions and served as "Dean of Admissions" until he retired for a second time in 1989. His love for the university was evident in his daily visits to the campus, either in official capacity or visiting friends and colleagues. He received the special UOP Alumni organization tribute: "Honorary Alumni" in 2012 and in 2013 rode as "Grand Marshall" in the UOP Homecoming Parade.
He was a faithful member of Central United Methodist Church, supported museums, athletics, university endeavors, musical organizations, and numerous additional local and national charitable causes.
Les is survived by immediate family members: sister Virginia Dean and niece Marcia Enquist (Pensacola, Fl.), his wife of 64 years, Marie; daughter Virginia Suzanne Medford and son Leslie David Medford (Valley Springs); grand-daughters Lillian Claire & Sovay; adopted sons Chinh, Khoi, Quang Vu and their families (San Jose, CA.); and extended family (Portland, OR).
A memorial service, open to the public, will be held Sunday, June 29, 2014 at 1:30 p.m. (Central United Methodist Church, Stockton, CA).
A private graveside service is planned for immediate family members.
For those who wish, donations in honor of Les would be gratefully accepted by Hospice of San Joaquin, Central United Methodist Church, or any worthy charitable organization of your choice.
Published in Lodi News-Sentinel from June 26 to July 3, 2014