Letter: Colonel Dick Littlestone Remembers Route 66

Colonel Dick Littlestone was crowned at the Woman’s Club 90th Birthday Party for being the oldest male attending this past June. He and wife Doris have been married 69 years.

Will Also Be Honored at VA Dedication

Littlestone wrote:

Thanks for Libby Motika’s delightful article on Route 66 “Get Your Kicks on Route 66 is the Theme of SM History Museum Exhibit.”

Our family: my mother, father, brother and I, moved from Chicago to LA in 1929, driving the original Route 66.

I have retained LA residency ever since, including time away, transferring from UCLA to UC Berkeley in 1942, & 32 years in the US Army.  For most of that time in the Army, I was stationed, with Doris & our children, in other states and countries.  Over those years, we drove Route 66 many times with our children to return to LA for visits with family & friends.  An enduring sight along the Route was the changing series of fun Burma-Shave signs.

We have been fortunately settled thereafter in The Huntington for the past 47 years.


Dick Littlestone

Editor’s note: I interviewed the Colonel for a 2014 story in the Post 283 News.

( The L.A. National Cemetery at the VA had been closed for new burials in 1996, which meant that Vets who live in L.A., would need to be buried in Riverside because that was the closest National Cemetery.

 Littlestone started a campaign to open additional burials in West Los Angeles at a Columbarium expansion. Back in 2014 he said, “I have been communicating with the VA Secretaries for 20 years regarding a columbarium annex here at the LA National Cemetery for LA vets since it was entirely closed to new burials and inurnments in 1996. I got it approved and funded by the Secretary in 2007. I’ve been fighting the bureaucracy ever since to get it going.” )

On Saturday, October 5 at 10 a.m. at 950 S. Sepulveda Boulevard, the Columbarium will finally be opened. Speakers at the dedication will include  the Secretary of the Department of Veteran’s Affairs Robert Wilke, actor Gary Sinise, VA Undersecretary Randy Reeves and master of ceremonies Johnny Holiday. The 300th Army Band and the Lindy Sisters will perform. Visit: facebook.com/NatCemLosAngeles/

Circling the News asked Littlestone, 96, if he, too, will be honored at the dedication. “Yes, indeed,” he said. “I expect to be honored for the 22-year effort in getting it established for our many LA City & County vets, to avoid interment at distant Riverside National Cemetery, if they wish cremation.”


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