David Paul Ogren


By Robert E. Ogren

Data: Born 21 June 1889; Jamestown, N.Y.; Died 8 May 1974, Miami, Florida.

Married on March 22, 1919 to Mary Gladys Ahlstrom (born 26 May 1891; died 5 March 1979) Jamestown, N.Y.

Education: Jamestown High School Graduation, June, 1909; In High School he was active in sports in track and on the basketball team. " A gentleman endowed with extraordinary abilities as a basketball player, a good track man, and in spite of these, an essayist of such ability that Mr. Fletcher commented upon it before study hall. He would be a favorite with all the girls were it not for his being "trapped" some say against his will" (J.H.S. Red and Green year book, 1909)

1910- 1911 attended Carnegie University, Pittsburgh and sang tenor in their Glee Club.

1911-1912 University of Michigan- undergraduate subjects: Math, English, History.

Military Service: W.W.I, 1917. He enlisted in the US Army and entered the Quartermaster Corps; second Lt., First Lt., Feb. 1918, Captain. Oct 7, 1918. Honorably discharged Oct. 3, 1919.


For 17 years after high school he gained experience in several jobs (teacher, clerk, car sales & service) including the military. [ As a teacher he went to Glendive, Montana near the Yellowstone River for a year(1912-1913) to conduct classes in a one room school house. After a year he returned home to help the family when his father had a severe accident. He was then employed for 4 years as a clerk at local Marlin Rockwell plant. After military service he had another clerking position for 2 years at Salisbury Axle Co, Jamestown, N.Y. Then for five years he was involved in Car sales and service.] During W.W.II 1941-1948, he was employed as a machinist.

His major occupation (1926 thru 1956), was as an Insurance Salesman for several companies in chronological order: Equitable Life Assurance Society;

Metropolitan Life Ins. Co.; Connecticut General Life Ins.; Empire State Mutual Insurance Co.; Hartford Accident and Indemnity Company.

Political Position: Republican Party; City Councilman representing Ward I, Jamestown, N.Y. 1949-1953; Chairman of the Jamestown Health Board 3 years;

Member of the Board of Managers of the Municipal Laboratory, Jamestown 1 year.

Memberships: First Presbyterian Church, elder, choir member; Mt. Moriah Lodge Free & Accepted Masons (member since May 1918)(33 rd Degree Mason, Member of the "Ancient Accepted Scottish Rite" since 1928.); the Life Underwriters Assn. The Union Grange; the Ira Lou Spring Post, American Legion; A. F. of L. Machinists Union 1941-1948; Jamestown High School Music parents Assn. (President, 1940); Director (Secretary) Falconer Metal Specialties, Inc., 1956-1972

Special Interests: gardening, reading, music, antiques, stamps, playing bridge.

Personal Nature: My dad was kind, quiet, gentle, patient with children and willing to listen and help with their play. He was always interested in his grandchildren as they may well remember. He was always ambitious for himself, honest, hopeful of succeeding, optimistic and self-analytical. However, in many ways he never fulfilled his aims or hopes. As an insurance salesman, he never became wealthy. Although he wanted financial security, he was not enslaved to earning money for its own sake. He was patriotic, volunteered for military service, maintained his interest through the American Legion and marching regularly in the annual veterans day parade.

He kept on trying to provide the best quality of life for his family. He must have been very discouraged at times, but did not take this out on other people or the children. Yet he had a good life and his family meant a great deal to him. He was a Christian man attending church regularly with his family and active in the Presbyterian church; but he was not doctrinal. He believed that the law of nature comes from God who is the creator. He had an inquiring mind and believed in self-education. He read on many subjects and was interested in many novels and mysteries. He had good leadership qualities as shown by his military service; Chairman of the Health Board and through activities as an elder in the Presbyterian Church. There is much more to be said, but this interesting man had much to tell us, so I will end by some of his remarks.

1926: " I have found the work I enjoy. Each daily task is a pleasure and I love to sell insurance. …I am visionary and a dreamer and now my work calls for these things. I am trusting and believe all men are honest. My work calls for that. I have a sympathetic nature and feelings that can read and sense the other fellow’s thoughts. My work calls for that."

1944: "Live your daily life in such a way that it will speak better than words of your Christianity-don’t argue on controversial subjects. If you win the argument you may lose a friend. Let your own attitude and poise be your best argument for Christ".

"I have found too in my experience that if I looked for it I could always find something to admire in any man, no matter how rough he seemed at first".

June 17, 1944: " There are a great many kinds of success. It has always seemed to me that of them all the financial success got the lest of real living. Financial success calls for ruthlessness, using one’s friends, closing one’s heart to love, family and God. I have never sought for it-because I did not want to pay the price. All I have wanted was peace, quiet and simple home life and that I have. For my children I have only wanted them to be good citizens, helpful to their neighbors and friends and useful to their community- and that to I believe I have." June 27,1949, when my own son Paul Robert was born, dad Ogren wrote me the following: "From now on you both should pray God to give you wisdom in bringing up your son. You will need everything you can draw on to do so. I read something the other day. It said " The best way to bring up a child is to see that its mother is always happy." I really think there is a lot to that. She will mold his character and have more to do with that than you will. So keep her happy. She can then do her job easier and better and the child will be happier. Lots of times I notice young mothers on the street with their child. What a difference there is in mothers. Some drag their children along as if they hated them and wish they were not along. Others smile down to their child and laugh with them and it is apparent that they are having a swell time. They are happy mothers and they have happy, well-poised children who have a sense of security in their parents. And children always grow up to be the kind of men (or persons) they were as children. And so I say " God bless you all and may you grow in wisdom." Dad 1950: "It is a good thing to be able to sort out the various factors of life and living and give each one it is proper value. -To learn not to be envious of another man’s position or wealth.-Only to be envious of his real worth or happiness."

June 15, 1964 in an answer to one of my letters he wrote:

" Dear- Bob- Thanks for the card and the kind words- I really do not know what I have done to deserve such words from my son;-and I look (back) to when you were young. About all I can remember is the struggle that I had just to provide the base necessities. I have never had any security or known what a regular income was. There were several winters when I bought coal in 50 lb. bags because I did not have the price of a ton,- I am afraid that instead of giving you children more of my thought and attention, I was too concerned with paying the rent and such things, but always there was a hand that kept me from falling. So some way we got thru and you children grew up as good citizens and made, your own life and I am sure a better one than I provided . Love Dad. "