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Mother Lode Round-Up Awards

2015 Honorary Town Marshal – Edgar “Ed” Hope

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Posse is please to honor long time Tuolumne County resident Edgar “Ed” Hope as the 2015 Honorary Town Marshal.

Eight six year old Ed Hope’s family’s ancestors traveled by wagon train from Wisconsin and settled in Coulterville. Ed grew up in Mocassin, CA and in 1945 after developing an interest in cattle during his stint with the FFA, Ed started cattle ranching starting with a pair of heifers with his father Phil Hope. The ranch is still in operation today and brands their cattle with a branding iron forged by Ed’s grandfather Tom Hope who was a blacksmith by trade.

In addition to running his cattle business Ed also had a 39 year career with Pac Bell. He started with them in 1948 working his way up from lineman to maintenance foreman. Ed was drafted during the Korean War and completed a two year enlistment as a paratrooper.

Hope has been involved with many local organizations including the Sonora Moose Lodge, Elks Lodge, Tuolumne County Cattleman’s Assoc., and Tuolumne County Farm Bureau.

Hope now lives in Phoenix Lake with his wife of 51 years, Marilyn Hope. They have four children Phil, Lisa, Noelle, and Suzann as well as five grandchildren.

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Posse would like to congratulate Ed Hope, “a good friend to a lot of people and very kind to others” as paraphrased from his wife Marilyn’s statement to the Union Democrat.

Top Hand Award – Craig Pedro

Photo courtesy Tuolumne County

Photo courtesy Tuolumne County

The Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Posse made a surprise announcement at this morning’s county Board of Supervisors meeting.

During the public comment period to open up the meeting, Posse member Ty Wivell took to the microphone to announce that County Administrator Craig Pedro has been named the prestigious “Top Hand” award winner for the 2015 Mother Lode Roundup. General Chairman Al O’Brien also took to the podium to thank Pedro and the Board of Supervisors for their yearly financial commitment to the event, and ongoing support. Pedro appeared surprised by the announcement, and he was given the traditional belt buckle in honor of the recognition.

Mother of the Year – Dequita “Clete” Chadwell

The 2015 Mother Lode Roundup Mother of the Year was born Dequita Chadwell on December 25, 1935 in La Follette, Tennessee. Know to her friends and family as “Clete”, she was the second daughter born to Charles H. (Hank) and Dorothy Chadwell.
In 1937, along with Hank’s Family the Chadwells left their home in Tennessee and moved to Melones, CA. It was there that Clete was raised and went to school. Clete attended and graduated from Bret Harte High School in Angels Camp. After graduating Clete accepted a job with Pacific Telephone and Telegraph in Sonora. It was there that she met her future husband Joe Stafford. Joe and Clete were married in March of 1957 at the Methodist Church in Sonora. They made their first home in Modesto, Ca and then in 1962 returned to Sonora when Joe transferred with the Telephone Company.

Clete worked at various jobs in Sonora over the years. She helped open a branch office for Modesto Savings and Loan in 1963 and continued to work for them for seven years. She then went to work for Carlo DeFerrari, Tuolumne County Clerk, for ten years. Her next move was to Yosemite Title Co. where she worked for almost twenty years.

Clete’s husband Joe became a member of the Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Posse in 1971 and was active in all facets of the Posse, especially the building of the Posse Clubhouse on Rawhide Rd. in Jamestown. At the time of his death Joe had been honored as a Life member for his over 35 years of service to the Tuolumne County Sheriff’s Posse.

After Joe and Clete retired they travelled extensively throughout the United States in their RV. All the trips were memorable and enjoyable to Clete, especially those taken with close friends. The longest trip was a trip they made to Alaska and back.

Clete stays active with friends and the Posse keeping books and reservations for club house events. She also enjoys spending time with her family, daughter Cheryl Lynn, grand daughter Josie, and her pride and joy, great grandson Gabriel.

Clete stated “It is such a privilege and honor to be chosen Mother of the Year by the Posse, and I want to thank them all.” To all the Posse wives and mothers that help make the Motherlode Round-up a huge success, Happy Mother’s Day. “I also want to wish all the Mother’s a very Happy Mother’s Day.