Ontario, CA Train - Bus Accident, Oct 1949

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Train Hits Bus; 15 or More Die

ONTARIO, Calif., Oct. 2 (AP).---An eastbound Union Pacific passenger train and a March Air Force bus collided near here Sunday night. Railroad officials said first reports indicated that fifteen to twenty persons were killed.

Railroad dispatches said bodies were strewn on both sides of the tracks for a considerable distance. Calls were placed for all available ambulances.

The bus was believed to have been carrying servicemen and their wives.

The train, the "Pony Express," was eastbound from Los Angeles to Chicago.

The Riverside County sheriff's office reported that about twenty-five persons were aboard the bus and that "half were killed and half injured." The bus was enroute back to March Air Base after taking the passengers on a beach party.

Witnesses said some bodies were jammed below the boiler of the locomotive. There was no indication whether anyone aboard the train was hurt.

Ontario is about thirty miles east of Los Angeles.

The crash occurred at 10:58 p.m. (Dallas Time). Wreckage of the bus was strewn the full length of the train, consisting of three diesel sections and twelve cars.

Engineer A. Hall of Los Angeles, told state highway patrolmen he was traveling at about forty miles an hour.

Dallas Morning News, Dallas, TX 1949-10-13

Listing of Casualties
PFC MICHAEL A. KASPER, 19, Wilkes-Barre, Pa.
Corp. WILLIAM C. NAVE, 19, Springfield, Ohio.
Corp. CONRAD N. McCLAY, 20, Stockton, Kan.
Corp. RALPH HALLWILL, 20, Marshall, Minn.
PFC RAYMOND M. STOCKER, 19, 1939 Letterly Street, Philadelphia, mother, Mrs. Margaret Stocker.
Corp. GORDON G. CRIMIN, 20, Baker, Ore.
Sgt. SYLVESTER A. TILL, 25, Rosanky, Tex.
Corp. DOYLE W. HALL, 24, Hobbs Island, Ala., Bus Driver.
PFC HENRY L. LEARY, 19, Dorchester, Mass.
Corp. RALPH D. MacDONALD, 19, Woronoco, Mass.
MRS. RUBY McLAUGHLIN, 45, Ontario, the chaperone.
JUANITA McLAUGHLIN, 18, her daughter.
MARY ALLEN, 17, Alta Loma, Calif.
ROMONA de BRA, 23, Ontario.
MARILYN BIGLEY, 18, Upland, Calif.
GLORIA MYERS, 19, Ontario.
List Of Injured.
OMEGA PEARCE, 18, Ontario.
MARQUITA PEARCE, her twin sister.
PFC CHARLES PLEVNIAK, 20, Swormville, N.Y.
WILLIAM RADCLIFF, 19, Garnett, Kan.
Sgt. PETER GRISOLIA, Brooklyn, N.Y., attached to the base.