James Carter Stratton was born May 22, 1920 to JC and Hattie Stratton in Clovis, NM. He grew up near Tucumcari, NM, where his family raised cattle and grew wheat. At 16 Jim went to work as a wrangler for the McGregor Cattle Company for $30 a month and beans. His job was to keep the 100 or so horses in the remuda traveling with the supply and chuck wagon. If horses or mules needed to be broke, that was his job
On Dec. 7, 1941 Pearl Harbor was attacked. On Dec. 8, Jim enlisted and was infantry bound. Within a year he was on the quartermaster corps stationed in Iran sending supplies in to Russia. Later on, the horse savvy Sergeant was part of a supply team preparing 10,000 horses and mules to be sent to Burma. Over a six month period during the war they were breaking and training a horse or mule every 15 minutes in order to fill the need. As part of the Remount Corps they were Army from the belt up. They wore campaign hats and shirts but supplied their own saddles and tack. From the waist down, they were just regular civilian cowhands.
In the spring of 1945 while he was stationed at Fort Robinson, he met Lila Miller at an Army dance in Lusk, Wyoming. They had a whirlwind courtship and married October 20, 1945 and began their life together. They lived on the family ranch in Lance Creek where they raised cattle, and instilled a love for horses in their son Ted and daughter Nona. After 60 years of living in Wyoming, James retired from a life of ranching at 88 and moved to Texas with Lila where he hung up his spurs in McKinney, TX.
Jim is survived by his wife Lila of 68 years, son Ted(Ann) of Lafayette, GA, daughter Nona(Mark) of McKinney, TX, grandsons Dale, Sam and Logan, granddaughters Sarah Lynn and Regina and 10 great grandchildren. Jim loved his extended family and his nieces and nephews held a special place in his heart. He is preceded in death by his parents and Sister Doris.
Condolences may be sent to Lila Stratton at 1001 W Midway McKinney, TX 75070. Jim was a lifetime member of the VFW and donations may be made in his name to VFW 3511 PO Box 333 Van Tassell, WY 82242-0333
For the complete article see the 07-30-2014 issue.
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