Dolby's Crossing, OH Train Crashes Into Motor Bus, Jan 1922
4 CHILDREN DEAD; 24 HURT.
4 OTHERS MAY DIE AS RESULT OF FATAL CRASH.
PENNSYLVANIA FREIGHT TRAIN HITS SCHOOL MOTOR BUS ON CROSSING NEAR VAN WERT -- BODIES OF YOUTH SCATTERED ABOUT RAILROAD RIGHT OF WAY.
DRIVER FAILS TO SEE TRAIN AND DRIVES ONTO TRACK WITH 28 PUPILS OF RIDGE-tp SCHOOL -- LIST OF KILLED AND INJURED COMPILED.
Three children are known to have been killed and more than 20 injured seriously when an east bound Pennsylvania railroad freight train, running thru a heavy fog, struck a school bus loaded with 28 school children at Dolby's Crossing, four miles east of Van Wert, at 8 a.m. Tuesday.
Two children escaped with minor injuries. Eight were taken to Van Wert County hospital in Van Wert.
The dead are:
LUCILLE FACKLER, 13, daughter of John Fackler, wealthy farmer. Body cut in two. Mangled beyond recognition.
JESSIE FACKLER, 11, her sister, skull crushed and body broken and bruised. The bodies of the two little girls were lying close together when found.
MARIETTA IMLER, 7, daughter of Ray Imler, both limbs cut off.
ROLLAND IMLER, 8, brother of MARIETTA, right arm and left leg cut off.
Probably fatally injured:
DON IMLER, 12, right arm cut off, left leg broken.
GEORGE FACKLER, 14, skull crushed.
AUGUST STAGEMAN, 12, right leg broken, left arm broken, fracture of skull.
LAWRENCE OVERHOLTZ, 10, skull fractured.
JOSEPHINE STAGEMAN, 13, fracture of skull.
PAUL IMLER, 9, scalp wounds.
DALLAS HARSHMAN, 14, cuts in the head and shoulders.
ANNA STAGEMAN, 17, body lacerated, head and shoulders cut.
AUDREY BOTKINS, 18, scalp wound.
JOE OVERHOLTZ, 20, driver, bruised and lacerated.
Five others taken to the hospital have not been identified.
Many others were taken to their homes or fames in the vicinity of the accident and their names are difficult to learn.
The bus was enroute to the Ridge-tp centralized school and was a little more than a mile from its destination when the tragedy occurred.
A heavy fog blanket obscured vision for a considerable distance.
As the death truck drew near the track at Dolby's Crossing, JOE OVERHOLD the driver, stopped and alighted, it is said. He walked to the center of the track.
He could hear or see nothing, he declared.
OVERHOLT returned to his truck and with its human freight started to climb the slight elevation to the tracks. Considerable power was needed to make the grade.
As the truck topped the grade, out of the fog, to the west appeared the dim black outlines of a locomotive, ploughing toward the truck.
The left side of the pilot struck the bus and hurled it 75 feet down the tracks.
Few of the children caught in the death trap were able to assist the others.
Engineer J. E. Trimble, Fort Wayne, declared he could not se the bus on the track. He told authorities he sounded the whistle near the crossing as a warning. His assertion is denied by survivors and residents near the scene of the accident.
Trimble, W. H. Koons, fireman, and James Rames, conductor, all of Fort Wayne, will be charged with manslaughter, Carl Dunifon, Van Wert County prosecutor, declared at noon Tuesday.
Three ambulances and all available physicians in Van Wert were rushed to the scene of the crash. Preparations were made at Van Wert County hospital here to receive the injured children as soon as they were given first aid and could be moved.
There were 28 children in the bus when it was hit, it being one of he four which takes pupils each morning to the township school.
Te Chas. Siferd ambulance was called from Lima and all available invalid coaches were ordered from Delphos.
Additional injured taken to their homes and the hospital are:
GERTRUDE BELT, daughter of Frank Belt.
DALLAS BELT, a brother.
GRACE DUPREY, daughter of F. M. Duprey.
TREVA DE CAMP.
MARY EVELYN GRANT.
WILLIAM and JAMES GRANT, children of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Grant.
All of the children are more or less injured. Some have broken arms, others broken limbs, or are cut and bruised.
The locality of the tragedy presented a terrible sight, observers say. The truck was completely demolished. When the first help reached the scene, cries of the survivors and dying were heard.
Death came unexpectedly to the little FACKLER sisters and MARIETTA IMLER. They were seated together in the bus, when the giant locomotive loomed out of the fog and crushed the truck like an egg shell with its mighty force. Speed of the train is estimated at 30 miles an hour.
News of the terrible occurrence spread like wildfire over the countryside.
Frantic mothers and agonized fathers whose little ones were in the bus set out for the scene. Some did not wait for a conveyance, but ran to the place. Several mothers are said to have run for distances as great as two miles.
They began searching among the moaning children for their own. Many of the women were prostrated. Some fainted on being told the tragic news.
It was at first reported that 20 children had died.
Ambulances, physicians and nurses were rushed to the spot from Lima, Van Wert and Delphos. A special train on the Pennsylvania carried medical aid from Lima.
Scenes about the hospital and morgues are indescribable. Van Wert is in a frenzy of excitement over the affair.
Engineer Trimble is held technically on $5,000 bond. The crew was allowed to proceed to Middlepoint, and were there relieved.
Charges of manslaughter were filed against Trimble at noon by Ray L. Imler, father of the little girls. Affidavits were issued by Justice A. C. Gilpin.
Lima News Ohio 1922-01-10