Winfred Kimber (my father) was supervisor of roads in Western Box Elder County for many years he worked on the horse drawn road grader (where he supervised a road crew of WPA workers in the community for a government work project).The next grader I remember him running was a gray open cab grader.
He worked from Grouse Creek to Yost, Park Valley, Goose Creek, Lucin, Etna, Naf, Strevell and all in between. He had a bed roll that he would put on his tractor and off to the little towns. People would come to meet him when they saw him coming to their community. Everyone was anxious to have him come and stay at their homes that night. He made a lot of friends on his travels. All the children knew him as the Candy Man because he always had candy in his tractor that he would pass out to all the children, plus pulling them up into the tractor to give them a ride (which he wouldn’t be able to do nowadays because of safety regulations), but then it was and exciting time for the children to be able to ride in the road grader.
When he would come home and we could hear the grader coming down the road we would run and open the gate so he could drive in. We were always so excited to have him home. We thought it was a treat to sleep that night in his dusty old bed roll out on the lawn.
Later he got a nice yellow road grader that was easier to manipulate and was not quite so noisy. He was always available for any emergency. Whenever the roads were flooded he would go and take care of it no matter what time of day or night. His working hours, although structured was left to his best judgment about when things should be done. He was very conscientious about his work. He loved to and took great pride in his work. This was his life. I remember my mother saying she was so tired of talking roads but this was his main interest.
One of his most interesting job experiences was to help build a new road from Strevell to Yost in about 1940. The old one was on the Utah side and was very rough and had many dips and turns because it had to be up on the hillside. The new one was in Idaho where the ground was flat and it could be straight and a lot wider. As he was working one day the County Commissioners came by and one of them said to him “Winfred do you know where you are working?” He promptly replied “Yes, I’m in Box Elder County, Idaho”. As of today, November 2010, it’s still a Utah road in Idaho and is maintained by Box Elder County, Utah road crews.
After Winfred, Grant Kimber held the job. Then Douglas Richins, Hughie Thompson, Eldon Kimber and now Bill Kimber, after Winfred they got road graders for Park Valley and Yost so the areas weren’t so extensive.
I was always so proud of him and his work ethic. At the time of Winfred’s employment it was an appointed job. I remember every election year he making the statement that he wondered if he would have a job next ear but it seemed no matter what the politics he was hired again.
Contributed by Delma Kimber Smith