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Can't remove selected child element for a select list using jQuery

I've attached a vertical screen shot of some crazy stuff going on. Am I right to expect j$('[id$=Model_List]').children().remove(); to remove all items in a select list? For some reason the list is still holding on to the old selected value while clearing out the rest of the items. I'm using the <Apex:selectlist in the html block, just not in the jQuery.
VG930M should be V243H as seen in hte console log...
Hopefully the screenshot gives you a better idea of what I'm talking about...


Any assistance would be greatly appreciated!