Eureka CA

Eric Hollenbeck, Eureka, California, A Vietnam Veteran, who served with the 101st Airborne during the TET offensive, was the expert craftsman. He and his wife Viviana built a nationally recognized custom Victorian Millwork shop, Blue Ox Millworks. The re-creation of the Lincoln’sfuneral hearse was the project he felt could engage a group of returning veterans who served on the front lines in Afghanistan and Iraq. The Blue Ox School for Veterans focuses on helping combat veterans re-claim their lives. Eric understood what they were going through and the need to do something positive. What could be better than learning to be a craftsman.

Phase II of the project was getting the hearse’s wood frame to Tombstone from Eureka.The travel team consistedof PJ Staab, Roger Stewart, a veteran, Erick andVivianaHollenbeck, and Thomas Jones, a combat wounded Vietnam Veteran.

The journey begin 2 am Sunday, February 15, 2015, PJ Staab, Roger Stewart, and I going to St Louis to catch a plane to San Francisco, CA. Jack Featherjoined us there and the four of us flew to Eureka on a prop plane. It wasa nicesunny day in Eureka, we secure a truck/escort van at the airport and headed to our hotel to check in. Then we went to the Blue OxMillworksto reviewed the build plan.

Eurekais the principal city andcounty seatofHumboldt Countyin theRedwood Empireregion ofCalifornia. The city is located onU.S. Route 101on the shores ofHumboldt Bay, 270 miles north ofSan Franciscoand 100 miles south of theOregonborder.At the2010 census, the population of the city was 27,191. The cityreceived its name from a Greek word meaning "I have found it!This exuberant statement of successful (or hopeful) gold rush miners is also the officialMottoof the State of California. Eureka is the only U.S. location to use the same seal as the state for its seal.

The next day, February 16th, an open house was held for the Eureka community and local news media. That afternoon we had to go to the hardware store to get plastic wrap and tape, several people came up to us and talked about the morning event. Word gets aroundquicklyin small towns.

The next day weloaded the hearse on to a U-Haul trailer and departed Eurekafor San Francisco.


J Publications, Inc. 2013