Preston M Jones, PM, 33, PP
October 25, 1994 I married into the Jones Family. I had met and fallen head over heels in love with their daughter Margaret. The wedding was held in their home. I hadn’t just found a wife but a set of parents as well. This is Dad’s story:
Preston Merwin Jones, “Press” to all his friends, was born October 12, 1923 in L.A., CA. He attended L.A. Tech. High School and he had plans to attend U.S.C. but opted to enlist in the Navy at 17 with his Dad’s permission. He was in the Navy for 4 years serving and protecting a variety of islands in the Pacific. Eventually, toward the end the war, he was stationed on Guam. He said, “The island had been bombed so badly that there wasn’t a building standing.”
He was very proud of his parents. He felt they sacrificed a lot for his Sister and him. He would always say, “My Mom was a short Italian.”
Preston worked for the Railroad upon his return from WWII. He found his true calling as a salesman selling asphalt for Douglas Oil that became ConocoPhillips and upon retirement from them he sold the services of an asphalt company until he retired from all “work” at exactly age 65. He then spent almost all his free time working in or leading Masonic organizations and gardening.
In 1951 at the request of Ray Echles, his Brother-in-law, he became a member of Hollywood Masonic Lodge #355. In his 60 plus years as a Mason he’s been the Master of his Lodge, a 33rd degree Scottish Rite Mason (40+ years (where he helped establish a childhood language clinic for Children suffering from Aphasia)) and the head of all local York Rite Organizations. In addition, he was a national officer in the Red Cross of Constantine, a very prestigious “invitation only” organization.
He was a Shriner and in 1981 he served as the head of the organization as Potentate for Long Beach, Orange County, Riverside and San Bernardino County. He also served on the Board of the Shriner’s Hospital for Children in Los Angeles. He and his wife Marvel were heavily involved in Masonry and especially the charitable efforts of Masonry on behalf of children.
He married Marvel Leah Millhouse in 1949 in Las Vegas, Nevada with a few friends in attendance. They lived in Long Beach, CA and in the same home for the past 49 years. Their marriage lasted until June 22, 2012 when his wife, Marvel suddenly passed away.
Preston passed away in his sleep at the age of 91 on August 16, 2015 . He would have been 92 on the 12 of October; my wife, Margaret is the only living relative. With his passing, it’s an end to an erra.
He’s best described as a man who served others, carried nothing about honors and was “hale hearty and well met.” His nature was to joke with and have fun with people. He was a people person.
Dad always said, “keep moving.” He suffered but never told anyone about his arthritis. He always said, “keep moving.”
His favorite saying was: “Life is short.” Even though he lived to be 91, he still felt life was short.
Rest in peace Dad . . . rest in peace.