A memorial service will be held Thursday, December 17 at 1 p.m. at Hems Brothers Mortuary in El Centro
for Jay C. von Werlhof, 86, of Ocotillo who died Thursday, December 10 of after battling a long term kidney illness. Burial
will be held at a later date.
Jay was born September 13, 1923 in Red Bluff, California.
Jay was drafted into the US Army from high school at the age of 20; he served in the Army during WWII as a Sergeant. Most
of his time was spent in Europe, intercepting, decoding and translating messages
during many battles, including the Battle of the Bulge. In 1946 he entered the University of California, Berkeley majoring
in History. He was a student of famed historians Herbert Bolton and Robert Stamp, and archaeologist Robert Heizer. He taught
college at the San Francisco School of Fine Arts, Chico State University, California Poly San
Luis Obispo, and various California community colleges and high schools.
He received his Masters Degree from Berkeley
in 1954. He was an incredible artist and illustrated archaeological site records and articles for Berkeley. He spent several
years at UCLA working
on his PhD in Intellectual History. In 1973 Jay was offered a job teaching archaeology, history, and Indian studies at the
San Diego State campus and at Imperial Valley Community College. He wrote
many important books and articles on the archaeology and Indian history of the California Deserts and documented more than
10,000 archaeological sites in Imperial County. He conducted archaeological research in all of California's 58 counties. He
was largely responsible for establishing the Imperial Valley College Desert Museum and was an emeritus director. As an archaeologist
Jay was very proud of his work with local Native Americans to save their history. Among many honors he received were the Lifetime
Achievement Award and the Mark R. Harrington Awards from the Society for California Archaeology and a Congressional Proclamation
from Congressman Bob Filner. He was also past president of the Society for California Archeology.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Victor and Bess von Werlhof and
various siblings. Survivors include his loving wife, Sherilee Torrence von Werlhof of Ocotillo, California; son, Mark Lincoln and his wife,
Stephanie of Santa Rosa, California and their children, Jessica and Kevin
Brenk and Brian and Heather Lincoln and great-grandchildren, Matthew Brenk and Billy Lincoln; and son Erik von Werlhof and
his wife Betty of Sacramento,
CA. and their children Evan and Emily, "adopted son" Steve Lucas as well as his mother-in-law Dorothy Torrence of El
Centro; and numerous nieces and nephews and cousins throughout the world.
The family suggests that in lieu of flowers donations be made to: the Imperial Valley Humane
Society, 1575 Pico Street,
El Centro, CA 92243 and to ASM PARC, The Jay von Werlhof Research Fund for the Study of Earthen Art, 2034 Corte Del Nogal, Carlsbad, CA 92011.
LOCATED IN IMPERIAL COUNTY, CALIFORNIA, USA, THE IMPERIAL VALLEY COLLEGE
DESERT MUSEUM SPECIALIZES IN THE ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE IMPERIAL VALLEY. HERE YOU WILL LEARN ABOUT THE PREHISTORY OF THE FIRST
PEOPLE OF IMPERIAL COUNTY. EVERYONE IS WELCOME. IT WILL OPEN SOON. THE IVC DESERT MUSEUM SOCIETY IS HARD AT WORK WITH EXHIBITS
IN ORDER TO OPEN THE MUSEUM AS SOON AS POSSIBLE.
Gate to the IVC Desert Museum
Thanks toall our supporters -- Its time to install the exhibits
in the IVC Desert Museum.
Since losing our original museum site to earthquake damage in 1978 the Imperial Valley College
Desert Museum Society, along with its many supporters in Imperial Valley, has been hard at work. Originally the museum was
known as IVC Barker Museum, after we lost our original site and moved to the new location the name was changed to IVC Desert
Over the years many fundraising events have been held and grant funding received. Finally the museum building
is nearly complete and exhibits are being designed and constructed.