Alvord, TX Train And Auto Collision, May 1931

SIX KILLED IN CRASH WITH TEXAS TRAIN.

CAR STOPS THEN LURCHES INTO FORT WORTH & DENVER'S PASSENGER TRAIN SUNDAY NIGHT AT ALVORD - REASON UNCLEAR.

Alvord, May 11. (AP) - Six members of an Alvord family, all occupants of the same automobile, were instantly killed here at 11:20 Sunday night when the machine in which they were riding was struck by a north bound passenger train of the Fort Worth and Denver.
The dead are:
CHARLES COLLINS, 30;
MRS. NORA LEE COLLINS, 23, his wife;
CHARLENE COLLINS, 5, their daughter;
MRS. FANNIE COLLINS, 65, his mother;
FLORINE COLLINS, 20, his sister;
CECIL FERGUSON, 18, brother of Mrs. Charles Collins.
The engineer said the car was stopped 10 feet from the crossing when the whistle was blown and just as the locomotive reached the crossing the car lurched forward into the path of the train.
The machine and the bodies of all six were carried about 250 feet down the track. All of the bodies were badly mangled and the baby's body was removed from the engine pilot after the train came to a stop.
Funeral services for all six are to be conducted in Alvord Tuesday.
COLLINS operated a gasoline filling station here and was a native of Wise County.

Engineer Saw Them.
J. F. Gillespie, engineer of the train, later told Justice of the Peace A. M. Stone he saw the automobile approach the track and stop at the crossing. Then, Gillespie said, the car lunged forward and stopped directly in front of the locomotive.
COLLINS and his party had just returned to Alvord from Fort Worth, where they had been visiting his sister, Mrs. P. J. Evans and presumably were on their way to the home of Mrs. Fannie Collins when the tragedy occurred.
Justice Stone said today that insofar as he could ascertain there were no witnesses other than the engineer. The train was held here an hour and a half while the bodies were recovered, the wreckage removed and statements of the train crew were taken. Although no responsibility for the collision had been fixed, Stone said, his inquest was still open and without formal findings today.

Blew Whistle.
The crossing where the Collins car was struck is not protected. Engineer Gillespie said he blew his whistle several times upon approaching Alvord, and believed that the automobile had stopped, some 10 feet from the rails, in response to his warning. When the car lunged forward, he said, the locomotive was practically at the crossing.
There is a slight incline in the street to the railroad grade, and the opinion was held that Collins may have been holding the car with brake and clutch pedals depressed, when his foot slipped, throwing the car back into gear and causing it to plunge forward.

Pampa Daily News Texas 1931-05-11