St. Louis, MO Bus And Auto Collision, Dec 1941
10 PERSONS MEET DEATH IN BUS CRASH.
VEHICLE BURSTS INTO FLAMES; 22 OTHERS HURT.
St. Louis, Dec. 25. -- (AP) -- Shrieking and screaming in the quiet of Christmas morning, 10 persons suffered an agonizing death and 22 others were injured today in the flaming wreckage of a bus.
Some of them had come from the peace of midnight mass at St. Vincent's Catholic church.
The Public Service company bus collided with an automobile, careened off a parked car and hurtling the sidewalk, smashed through a 200-gallon fuel oil storage tank in a yard.
The oil tank exploded, enveloping the bus in flames as it plunged into the brick wall of a tenement.
Terrorized passengers stampeded for the exits. Telling of panic-stricken efforts to fight their way out of the bus, MRS. MARGARET BERTHOLD, one of the least injured, said the rear door jammed after she had made her escape.
"I don't remember getting out," she related, "but I did and then the door slammed shut and the others trying to get out couldn't open it."
"I'll never forget those agonized faces that clamored for escape from that flaming bus."
Two witnesses of the accident, ALBERT HOMER and EDWARD JONES were credited by police with preventing a larger fatality toll. They broke several windows and pulled seven persons to safety.
The identified dead, as listed by police, were:
JOHN SOUKUP, 17, St. Louis.
WALTER WROUGHTON, 55, driver of the bus.
MRS. FRANCES GLOSS, 72, a widow.
JOSEPH VULCHICK, 50, her son-in-law.
EDITH FECK, 43.
DOLORES REIFSCHNEIDER, 15.
ALFRED C. CRANE, 41.
WILLIAM J. HASSEL, 64.
ROBERT R. WARE, 19, Silcam Springs Ark., a sailor on leave from the Great Lakes Naval Training Station.
MRS. TERESA WRIGHT, Kansas City.
Kokomo Tribune Indiana 1941-12-26