Friends held a memorial last month for Clarence O’Day, who was known as “CD” in Guerneville and was a familiar presence downtown, a tall wiry bearded man who rode a touring bike with gear bags hanging over the rear wheel. He’d been a homeless resident of Guerneville for more than 10 years.
O’Day was also known as James Wade, a painter and a muralist whose paintings can be seen in town at Flavors Unlimited on Main Street and on the walls at the Blended Choice restaurant and juice bar on Armstrong Woods Road.
“He was a good guy,” said one of the staff at Blended Choice. “He was always helping out.”
Several years ago he painted the mural that covers almost one side of the concrete abutment nearest town under the old Guerneville Bridge.
His mural, which O’Day called a landscape of remembered places, includes a prominent waterfall and tall trees that resemble the redwood forest on Neeley Hill overlooking Guerneville.
The landscape represents “different places I’ve seen in my life,” said O’Dale, a former Marine who grew up in Reseda, in Southern California. The mural is based on, “about 40 to 60 places where I’ve been” said Wade, who for many years hitchhiked and biked around the U.S.
He created the bridge mural using gifts of paint and cash from Guerneville businesses and individuals. O’Day’s mural is still on the bridge, clear of graffiti, fenced in between Johnson’s Beach and Riverkeeper Stewardship Park. His list of sponsors is still painted on the bridge too.
“I like making people…
click here to read more.