Stories from The Tamaracks:
This picture was taken in 1941, prior to World War II. The two women, guests at The Tamaracks, are unknown. The two men, from left, are Bud Turner and Ken Demmons.
Left to right: Ken Demmons, Manager of the Tamaracks; Pel and Bud Turner, sons of Maude and Henry "Heine" Turner. The picture was taken during the autumn of 1946.
December 21, 2000
Seeley Swan Pathfinder
Seeley Lake, Montana
Stories From Long Ago About The Tamaracks of Seeley Lake and Surrounding Area Compiled by Jack Demmons. This is Part 15.
The picture of the "Three Tough Hombres" was taken at The Tamaracks during the autumn of 1946, approximately one year after the close of World War II. They had just returned from a trip into the South Fork Wilderness Area - now known as the Bob Marshall Wilderness Area - where they had taken a group of hunters.
Ken, age 34, the dude ranch's chief guide, was managing The Tamaracks. Bud, 28 years old, a Marine Corps fighter pilot, was home on leave. Pel had turned 21 and was working at The Tamaracks. He had tried to become a military pilot but circumstances worked against him. He had been enrolled in a U. S. Navy Air Corps flight program in 1943, but the Navy suddenly had more than enough pilots and the program was shut down. Pel came back to The Tamaracks for three months and then joined the Marines. he was placed in the Marine Corps' V-12 Program - which would have led to flight status - at the University of North Carolina for two years, but the war ended before he was able to graduate.
After returning home in 1945 Pel learned how to fly at the Johnson Flying Service in Missoula, and his instructor was Jack Hughes - who was to become one of the most famous pilots in the nation.
During the Korean War, which began June 25th, 1950, Pel was called back into the Marines and given a commission as a second lieutenant. He was carried on the Marine Corps' rolls as Lt. Pelham Massey Turner, serial number 053143.
(Ken and Valle Demmons had six youngsters, Kenneth "Sandy," Ann, Tom, Henry "Turner," Dave and Debbie. Sandy and Turner later became military pilots and both served overseas during the Vietnam War. There will be more about them in a future edition of the Pathfinder.)