Wesley Edmond Anderson III

Wesley Edmond Anderson III died at his home in Weldon, CA while under hospice care on June 13, 2024 after a 7-month battle with cancer.  He was born in Clinton, Iowa on February 22, 1949 to Wesley Edmond Anderson Jr. and Rosanna (Smith) Anderson.  His parents moved to southern California in the 1950s to pursue the American dream.  Quickly disillusioned by consumerism and city life, he gravitated to animals and nature where he felt most at home.  As a teenager he moved to Bishop, California where his grandmother Ruth Anderson introduced him to the teachings of truth in the Bible and he was baptized as one of Jehovah’s Witnesses. Because of his love for God’s creation, he was drawn to the cowboy life and worked as a sheepherder at Mono Lake, cattle pen rider in the Central Valley, but was most especially fond of mule packing.  In his lifetime, he worked at nearly every one of the dozen commercial pack stations in the eastern Sierra Nevada Mountains along the Owens Valley.  Most of these are family-owned, and represent a way of life handed down for generations, operating under special use permits on National Forest and National Park lands.  From the 1970s to the 2000s he helped introduce thousands of visitors to backcountry travel, riding a horse on rocky mountain trails, while leading strings of mules into the wilderness on days-long trips.  He expertly tied loads of dunnage on mules for either hikers who wanted stock support to lighten their packs or for overnight guests on rented horses.  He helped transport snow survey equipment, barrels of live trout to stock remote lakes, and even a boat for the government, and everything from dynamite (for dam construction) to dead bodies (a man found dead of a heart of attack on the trail).  Known as the “Legendary Packer of the High Sierra,” Mr. Anderson had a brilliant mind, becoming proficient at knot tying, livestock management and horse equipment.  Self-educated, he had an encyclopedic memory of ancient world empires, geography, archeology and their relation to fulfillment of Bible prophesy.  Over the years, his fascination with traditional horse cultures compelled him to travel and explore the most remote areas of Australia and Argentina, even living in yurts with nomads in the Mongolian steppes.  He cared for animals, especially dogs, and always placed their welfare first.  He worked nearly a decade for veterinarian Dr. Craig London, owner of Rock Creek Pack Station in Bishop, California, who appreciated his exceptional attention to his animals.  This is where he met the love of his life, Penelope.  They joined the Lake Isabella Congregation and served together to help share the Bible truth that set them free.  Besides his loving wife, he is survived by his brother Mike Anderson of Eugene, Oregon, children  Rachel Beth Anderson of Reno, NV and Jason Anderson of Knoxville, TN and nearly 9 million spiritual brothers and sisters, Witnesses of Jehovah, in 239 lands, from “every nation and tribe and tongue” (Revelation 14:6).  A memorial service will be held at 2pm on August 10, 2024 at the Lake Isabella Kingdom Hall, 1911 Edith Avenue, Lake Isabella, CA 93240.  An electronic Zoom connection will also be available.  For information call 760-379-2495.In lieu of flowers, donations can be made online at www.JW.org.