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Fireman Recruit Dennis Jerry Crain
 U. S. Navy

May 31, 1947 - July 1, 1966
Cedarvale Cemetery
Bay City, Matagorda County, Texas

Gold Star Mother
Velma Marie (DeWeese) {Crain} Messer


Bay City High School annual picture
courtesy of Matagorda County Museum.

Fireman Recruit Dennis Jerry Crain, U.S. Navy was born on May 31, 1947 at San Saba, San Saba County, Texas and died on July 1, 1966 in a one vehicle accident near El Campo, Wharton County, Texas.  He attended Bay City High School before enlisting in the Navy.  Jerry was killed in the early morning hours of the day he was to leave for recruit training at the Naval Recruit Training Center, San Diego, CA.  At the time of his death his mother, two sisters and two brothers were living in Bay City, his father was living in San Saba.

Dennis Jerry Crain was killed in a one-vehicle accident four miles north of El Campo on Farm Road 2923. The 19 year-old lost control of the vehicle and was thrown out of the truck as it rolled 1 ˝ times.

The Daily Tribune,  July 1, 1966



El Campo – A 19 year-old Bay City youth was killed four miles north of here early today in a one-vehicle accident on FM 2923. He was identified as Dennis Jerry Crain by the Department of Public Safety’s John Easley.

Crain is the son of Mrs. Jimmy Messer of Bay City and Jerry Crain of San Saba.

According to the DPS’ Easley, Crain was found about 4:05 a.m. today. Time of death, however, was placed about 3:00 a.m., the officer said. 

Crain, who was driving a pickup owned by Wiley Crain, an uncle, apparently lost control of the vehicle, Easley said. The pickup overturned one and a half times. Crain was thrown out of the truck, the DPS Patrolman stated. 

It was reported that Crain was to have left this morning for Naval duty in San Diego, Calif.

Funeral services will be held at 2:30 p.m. Monday at the Calvary Baptist Church, however, other details of the service were not available at press time today.

In addition to his parents and uncle, Crain is survived by a sister, Mrs. Melba Nedham of Bay City, and three other uncles, Wilburn Crain, Buckeye, and Jesse and Joe Crain of Bay City.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Taylor Bros. Funeral Home.

The Daily Tribune,  July 1, 1966

Photo courtesy of Betty Crosby

Military Rites Held For Crain

Funeral services with full Navy military honors were held at 2:30 p.m. Monday in Calvary Baptist Church for Dennis Jerry Crain, who was killed July 1 near El Campo in one of the first area holiday accidents.

Rev. Tommy Nesbitt officiated, and honorary pallbearers included Tommy Coleman, Bobby Dawson, Sonny Coleman, Gerald Hanzick, Roger Holloway and Tom Steubing.

He is survived by his parents, Jerry Crain of San Saba and Mrs. Velma Marie Messer of Bay City; two sisters, Mrs. Yvonne Broussard and Mrs. Melba Louise Needham, and two brothers, Howard Leon Crain and Bobby Dean Messer, all of Bay City.

Interment was in Cedarvale Cemetery under the direction of Taylor Bros. Funeral Home.

The Daily Tribune,  July 5, 1966


Funeral services for Velma Marie Messer of Bay City will be held at 2 p. m. Saturday at the Taylor Brothers Funeral Chapel with the Rev. Jerry Fugatt officiating. Burial will be in the Cedarvale Cemetery.

Mrs. Messer, 63, was born April 19, 1920, in St. Joseph, Mo., and died Jan. 19, 1964, in Matagorda General Hospital. She had lived in Bay City for approximately 25 years.

She is survived by her husband, Jimmy Messer of Bay City; two daughters, Melba Needham and Yvonne Brosshard, both of Bay City; 13 grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Pallbearers will be Joe, Jessie, Wiley, Lusty, Mack and Farris Crain.

Funeral arrangements are under the direction of Taylor Brothers Funeral Home in Bay City.

 The Daily Tribune, July 20, 1984


SAN  SABA Jerry Crain, 75, died Thursday, March 22, 2001. Service will    be  at 3 p.m. today in Howell-Doran Funeral Home Chapel with burial in    Wallace Creek Cemetery.
Survivors  include  sisters,  Johnnie Cagle of Brady, Jerline Davis of    Plano,  Cora  Nell  Hedrick  of Avery and Darlene Boultinghouse of Oak    Hill;  brothers, Stoney Crain of Denver City, Wiley Crain of San Saba,    Lusty  Crain  of Blessing, Franklin Crain of Cherokee and Randle Crain of  Kingsland;  and  children, Howard Crain of Petal, Miss., and Melba Needham of Bay City.  

San Angelo Standard-Times, March 23, 2001


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