Keith T. Strattan
WELL KNOWN CITIZEN DIES LAST NIGHT
Was Returning from St. Louis When His Oakland Car
Struck Ford Near Addieville About 7 O’clock
VICTIM OF ACCIDENT MADE UNCONSCIOUS
Was Hurried to Office of Physician But Was Beyond Human Help;
Prominent in Business Life; Leaves Family.
Keith T. Strattan was almost instantly killed last night about
7:00 o’clock about a mile and a half west of Addieville, on the
west hard road when the Oakland car he was driving collided with
a Ford car which was standing partly on the slab. The men driving
the car were Henry Brueggeman and Herbert Gaebe, and the car belonged
to the former. They hurried Mr. Strattan in another car to the office
of a physician in Addieville, but he died without regaining consciousness.
It is stated he lived about ten minutes after the accident.
Body Thrown Some Distance.
Mr. Strattan was found about ten or twelve feet from his car, on the slab,
having fallen on his head and shoulder. His face was badly crushed and the
skull fractured. A large pool of blood on the slab told the story of the tragedy.
The story of the men in the Ford car at the inquest was to the effect that they
had driven from the north on the dirt road to the hard road, and had stopped to
remove the chains from their car, two of the wheels of which were on the slab and
two resting on the ground beside the slab. They were facing east, and while removing
the chains they saw a car approaching from the west, and fearing a collision stepped
aside. Mr. Strattan’s car struck with sufficient force to turn the Ford car around two
or three times, it is stated, and his own car turned over twice. The Ford car was badly
damaged but Mr. Strattan’s car was more greatly damaged. Mr. Strattan was alone.
Verdict of Accident
Mr Strattan had gone to St. Louis on business and was bringing home in his care repairs
and merchandise bought in the city.
He was given such attention as was possible in Addieville, and the coroner, Dr. P. B.
Rabeneck, was notified and held an inquest last night that the body might be brought to
Mt. Vernon without delay. The verdict of the coroner’s jury was unavoidable accident.
Mt. Vernon was called by long distance and news of Mr. Strattan’s death communicated to
his family. Koser T. Johnson was notified and with Charles Winfree immediately departed
for Addieville where they took charge of the body and brought it to Mt. Vernon to be prepared
Shown Much Consideration.
In this connection it is stated that the coroner and others at Addieville showed every
courtesy possible to Mr. Johnson and others from Mt. Vernon who visited that place in
connection with the tragedy.
O. D. Smith, C. B. Mason and Ralph Huffer who were en route from East St. Louis to Mt. Vernon ,
learned of the tragedy and immediately drove to Addieville where they learned of Mr. Strattan’s
death. The details they heard of the tragedy were in effect the same as were brought out at the
Death a Profound Shock.
News of Mr. Strattan’s death spread rapidly in Mt. Vernon and it is probable no death in the
history of Mt. Vernon caused a more profound shock. Mr. Strattan had hundreds of friend and
never had an enemy. Expressions of deepest regret at his untimely death were universal last
night and today. He was one of the best known business men in Mt. Vernon , although comparatively
young, having been associated with his father, the late Rynd L. Strattan in business years before
the death of the father. He numbered his friends in all classes, the humblest to the highest, and
he treated all with the most kindly courtesy and consideration. He never forgot an old friend and
always manifested his regard in a manner sincere, honest and hearty. It is no exaggeration to say
he delighted in favoring his friend and assisting them in any manner in his power, at all times and
under all circumstances.
Of Very Friendly Disposition
Naturally of a social disposition he was a man of breadth and did not allow outward appearances
to control his friendship. He looked at the man within. The exterior might be lacking in splendor
in style, but the man within and not the apparel was what he based his estimate on and which
governed his regard.
He had a big heart, and his kindly disposition was manifest by a sympathy that went out to the
suffering, whether friend or foe. He stood loyally by his friends and his sympathetic nature,
his kindly words of cheer, his pleasant greeting were an inspiration and brought happiness and
brightness in the lives of many. To know him was to admire and respect him and his sunny nature
and kindly ways will never be forgotten by his hundreds of friends, who today mourn his death in
the prime of his life and in his plentitude of his powers. To know Keith Strattan was to love him.
Member of Old Family.
Mr. Strattan was a member of one of the old and highly respected families of Jefferson county,
both on his father’s and his mother’s side.
He was a son of the late Rynd L. Strattan, and a grandson of the late Capt. Stephen T. Strattan.
He was a member of a family of business men, and the hardware business in which he was engaged
was established by his father in 1867.
Capt. Stephen T. Strattan in his day was one of the leading business men of Mt. Vernon, and
prominent in church and civic circles.
Mr. Strattan’s mother, who died sometime ago, was a daughter of the late James K. Jones, a
leading citizen of Mt. Vernon and Jefferson county for many years.
Rynd L. Strattan retired from business in 1913, and turned it over to his sons, Keith T. and
Takes Over Brother’s Interest.
March 21, 1925, announcement was made that Keith T. Strattan had purchased the interest of his
brother, who retired shortly after, and since that time Keith T. Strattan has been proprietor
and manager of the store.
Member of High School Board.
Mr. Strattan for several years prior to his death and at the time of his death, was a member of
the Township High school board. He took great interest in education, and was one of the most
active and valuable members of the board.
Prominent In Masonry.
Mr. Strattan had been for many years a leader in Masonic affairs in Mt. Vernon and throughout
this section of Illinois.
He served as master of the Mt. Vernon lodge A.F.& A.M. as high priest of the A.D.
Webb chapter and as commander of the Patton Commandery Knights Templar. He was a
member of several other Masonic orders. He also served as district deputy grand
master and was one of the best authorities on Masonic work and Masonic law in this
section of the state.
Mr. Strattan was highly regarded by the members of the order who recognized his
ability and appreciated the interest he took in Masonic affairs and he had great
influence in directing the affairs of the order in which he was so deeply interested.
Mr. Strattan attended a Masonic meeting on Wednesday evening just 24 hours before
he met his untimely death, at which time he made a most interesting address on certain
phases of Masonry.
Married In 1899.
Mr. Strattan was united in Marriage with Miss Jessie Adams June 1, 1899 who with
two children, Lavina and Rynd Lawder Strattan, survive.
Mr. Strattan is survived by one brother, Chauncey Strattan and one sister, Mrs.
Olivia Swift, of St. Petersburg , Fla.
Mr. Strattan was 53 years old August 10, 1927.
The absent relatives have been notified of his death, and funeral.
Source: Mount Vernon Register News
Date: Feb. 17, 1928
Submitted by Brenda Hereford and Nancy E. Davis