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Jacksonville Courier, 28 July 1930


Freeman S. Spears, Deaf Mute, Meets Death on Way Home From Business District - Funeral Today

Ashland, July 28 - Freeman S. Spears, 51, of this city was instantly killed about 1- o'clock Sunday morning when he was struck by a north bound gasoline motor driven passenger train on the Chicago & Alton at a crossing here. George Gauansmeyer, Cass county coroner, was notified and planned to hold an inquest today.

Spears, a mute is believed to have stepped upon the crossing without noticing the approach of the northbound passenger train which was due in Ashland at 10 o'clock each morning. He was walking north toward his home at the time of the accident. It is not know whether he had started down the right of way toward his home or was caught unaware of the train as he started to cross the track. His body was carried several feet. He suffered a fractured skull and other injuries.

Spears had been accustomed to make a trip down town every Sunday morning for his newspaper. He had purchased his paper this morning and waved his hand to a number of friends as he returned toward his residence in the north section of the city. There was no eye witness to the accident. The train came to a stop immediately, 150 yards south of the depot.

The victim is survived by his wife, Bertha Spears and two daughters, Mrs. Elizabeth Surratt and Mrs. Ruth Page, both of Ashland. Two sisters, Mrs. Frank Wier of Pleasant Plains and Mrs. Lottie Baker of Tulsa, Okla. And four brothers, B. W. Spears of Ashland, Fred and Bert Spears of Los Angeles and Seymour Spears of Louisville, Ky., also survive.

Funeral services will be held at the Ashland Christian at 1:30 o'clock Tuesday afternoon. Interment will be made in Berea cemetery.

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