Greenup, IL Auto And Semi Trailer Crash, Jan 1962


Greenup, Ill. - (AP) - An auto and a semi-trailer truck crashed in rainy fog Saturday, demolishing the auto and killing its eight occupants.
The victims, all St. Louis residents, included three young children and their parents. They were en-route to Ohio.
Authorities worked for five hours to complete identification of the dead. Fragments of the auto and the bodies were strewn along a 120-foot stretch of U.S. 40, opposite the fairgrounds on the outskirts of Greenup, a town in south central Illinois, 120 miles east of St. Louis.
The victims were HARRISON KING, 30; his wife, NELLIE, 23; their 4-year-old twins, HARRISON, JR., and LINDA; their 1 1/2 year old son, MARVIN DARRELL; JESSIE MARTIN, 43; and his wife, CLARA, 48; and JULIE McCHESTER, 45.
"It was unavoidable, unavoidable," said Neal Rowlader, 41, of East St. Louis, Ill., the truck driver. "The car skidded right in front of me. I couldn't help myself."
Rowlader, the only survivor, escaped with a back injury.
The auto was cut in two at the dashboard with only the front section remaining intact. The big truck westbound to East St. Louis plunged off the two-lane highway and overturned.
The death toll of eight in one auto exceeded the Illinois toll of seven killed in a Shelbyville accident in 1959. In that crash, seven of eight high school students returning from a prom were killed in a collision of their auto and a train.

Sunday Gazette-Mail Charleston West Virginia 1962-01-07