Syracuse Journal, April 18
Stuntman accidentally shot

HOLLYWOOD (Universal) — To provide a thrill for movie audiences, Hurd McClellan, well-known stuntman, faced a blazing pistol and today is laying perhaps fatally wounded at a hospital because tragic realism unexpectedly entered the scene.

McClellan, who has dared death scores of times in the course of his film work, faced the unerring bullets of Marion Semmelmeyer, expert pistol shot. For safety, he wore a steel, bullet-proof vest.

The scene was to show Mrs. Semmelmeyer, pistol in hand, repulsing the attack of a holdup man.

Timed to precision, McClellan had been rehearsed to walk along a straight line drawn on the ground. The cameras were focused to show the bullets striking McClellan’s chest.

The cameras started. McClellan stalked toward the girl, but wavered from the straight line. Mrs. Semmelmeyer fired. The bullet missed the steel vest, striking McClellan in the abdomen.

McClellan died April 20. An Associated Press story said he was wearing two “bullet proof" jackets. Mrs. Semmelmeyer said she fired 48 shots into them. A police investigation exonerated Mrs. Semmelmeyer.


Syracuse Journal, June 15
Death by runaway car
ROCHESTER (INS) — John Thomas, 52, Churchville farm hand, today met death under the wheels of his employer’s automobile which he was cranking. The machine, left in gear, started to move. The victim was knocked down when he attempted to block the vehicle and was crushed to death.


Syracuse Journal, May 31
Five killed in Memorial Day races

At the 21st 500-mile speedway race at Indianapolis, driver Lester Spangler of Los Angeles, and his riding mechanic, G. L. “Monk” Jordan, and driver Mark Billman of Indianapolis were killed in spectacular crashes. Billman’s riding mechanic, Lombard, was thrown clear.

Johnny Pasco was instantly killed at Burbank in a collision which marred the Memorial Day races there, and a sharp swerve to avoid a skidding car spelled death for Roy Forest Jones, 24, in a race at Jennerstown, Pennsylvania.


Syracuse Journal, July 5
Boy's prank turns deadly

BOSTON (Universal) — While several thousand persons looked on in horror, a boy’s prank sent a young daredevil to death late yesterday in the 100-mile feature race at the Readville motorcycle races.

A firecracker tossed by a boy in the grandstand dropped into the path of Frank Ricci, 23, of Everett, as he whirled around the western corner of the track at breakneck speed, and when he swung to avoid it, his cycle overturned.


The truck involved in the deadly accident (below) was an all-too-typical vehicle in the 1920s and '30s, a makeshift bus that carried many people, but without much consideration for passenger safety.

Syracuse Journal, August 19
Fair visitors killed on way home

SOUTH BEND, Indiana (INS) — Seven persons were killed and 12 injured when a truck containing a large group returning from the Century of Progress Exposition was sideswiped by another truck, spilling the occupants into a ditch on the Western Highway, six miles west of here, early today.

All the victims were residents of Wakarusa, Indiana, and the immediate vicinity. Wakarusa is about 38 miles from where the accident occurred.

Occupants of the other truck fled the scene. A sheriff’s posse and motorcycle officers began a search for them.

John Loughlin, 50, drove the truck carrying the fair visitors. It was believed the tarpaulin-covered truck carried between 27 and 30 persons, most of whom were asleep when the accident happened. Police said no one saw the hit-and-run vehicle plainly enough to describe it.


Syracuse American, August 27
His was a tragic homecoming

DETROIT (INS) — Ten minutes after prison doors swung open today for George Huck, 49, of Detroit, and he walked out a free man, he met a violent death under the wheels of a truck which was carrying him home. Huck wanted to visit a friend on the outskirts of the city and apparently was so excited about the prospect that he hopped from the truck as it approached his friend’s house. Huck stumbled and plunged headlong beneath the vehicle’s rear wheels.


Old cars had an interesting feature that, unfortunately, was often an irresistible hazard — the running board. Fleeing bank robbers were known to take hostages and force them to stand on the running boards of getaway cars, thus becoming human shields.

More often people — young and old — would give in to the temptation to ride outside the vehicle by standing on the running board and holding on to anything handy. What follows is a story about the worst possible consequences of riding in such a fashion.

Syracuse Journal, August 31
Up ahead, a deadly obstacle

INDIANA, Pennsylvania (INS) — Three boys, all of them 8-years-old, were killed today while hitching a ride on a huckster’s truck. The huckster also was killed in a collision between his vehicle and a gasoline truck at an intersection in Ernest, a small mining town near here. First reports are that the driver of the huckster truck failed to see the gasoline truck because the boys, who had clambered on the running board, obscured his vision.


Syracuse American, October 8
Even a fatal automobile crash
doesn't ruffle the palace guards

LONDON — Two men were killed and four others injured when an automobile, out of control, ran amok and crashed into the throng of spectators watching the colorful ceremony of the changing of the guard at Buckingham Palace.

With a crash that echoes through the historic palace, the car, driven by F. H. Hills, 45, sideswiped another machine and ran full tilt into the crowd. With Hills slumped over the wheel unconscious, the car came to a stop against a lamp post.

The accident happened just as the band struck up a lively tune. Screams of the injured mingled with the strains of music while the ceremony was continued.

The dead were members of the Royal Air Force station at Andover. They were on a sightseeing expedition in the capital. The band stopped momentarily when the crash occurred, and then resumed. A sentry, knocked down, resumed his post as though uninjured.


Brooklyn Daily Eagle, November 13
Joyride has tragic ending
Three investigations were in progress today into the airplane joyride over Brooklyn which yesterday resulted in a crash, the death of three men and injury of a fourth — and which might have injured or killed any number of other persons.

It was a spectacular flight that took its toll of dead and injured. It started in a spirit of devil-may-care gaiety.

The dead are:
Louis Henry Kuh, 19, of 58 Grand Street.
Henry Rochaboski, 19, of 153 Engert Avenue.
Adam Bowinski, 22, of 112 Wythe Avenue.

The pilot, 19-year-old Stanley Kitowski of 95 Metropolitan Avenue, had attended the Polish-American Armistice Day ball at the Grand Paradise, Grand and Havemeyer Streets, which began Saturday night and did not end until sunrise yesterday. It was held under the auspices of members of the Church of Our Lady of Consolation, Metropolitan Avenue and Berry Street.

Then, at dawn, Kitowski and five friends left the ball and went to mass. And after that someone suggested that Kitowski, a licensed pilot, could take then for a ride over the church. They proceeded to put the suggestion into effect.

Laughing and joking still in the stiff shirts and tuxedo jackets they wore to the ball, the young men climbed into a car and drove to Curtiss Airport at Valley Stream. There Kitowski showed his license and rented a plane from the manager of the Safair Company (pronounced, ironically enough, “Safe-air”).

Fortunately, the only plane available had room for only three passengers and the pilot. Two of the young men — Frank Miesa and Joseph Sowa— had to remain on the ground. They were the two who survived without injury.

Up went the Cessna monoplane an the joy ride was on. Brooklyn citizens who were abroad that early on Sunday morning saw hat seemed like a drunken plane tottering through the air.

It flew low over the hilly west side of Evergreens Cemetery. It tipped to one side and swayed over the trees. It rose and flew upside down. It brushed the tree tops,, leaving some of its red fabric behind. It touched a church spire. It grazed an elevated station.

Residents in the Bushwick section watch with amazement as the plane continued on its erratic course. For a time, the pilot seemed to regain control of the machine as it flattened out and turned its nose toward Floyd Bennett Field, looking for a landing place. Policemen saw it and one of them turned in an alarm.

Kitowski was trying to reach open country, but the plane’s wings had been ripped to shreds. He lost altitude and could not maintain his direction. the machine lurched. first one wing dipped, and then the other.

At Dumont and Pennsylvania Avenues, it barely missed a four-story high school building. At 7:50 a.m. it struck the roof of a tenement building at 489 Hegeman Avenue,, near Georgia Avenue, bounced, and crashed to the street.

One passenger was dead, the other two died in Trinity Hospital shortly after. Kitowski was taken to the hospital with internal injuries and a possible fracture of the skull.

Those near misses

Syracuse Journal, April 8
Kids, stick with real marbles

TUPPER LAKE — Search is underway today for a shabbily-dressed man who attempted to sell a box of dynamite caps here, following the finding of a similar type by children Friday in the “baby grade” at primary school who used them for marbles.

The investigation was started after one of the several children rolled a cap down the floor of the schoolroom. When Mrs. Grace Grabenstein, teacher, noticed the “marble,” she picked it up to discover it to be a dynamite cap. Making a hasty check of the classroom, she found six of her pupils rolling the caps on their desktops.

Police Chief Frank E. Sheldon was notified, and after questioning the children learned they found them in a box tucked away in a clump of bushes near the swamplands behind the school, where they had gone to seek pussy willows.

A local hardware dealer told authorities a shabbily-dressed man came to his store Wednesday with a box of caps, similar to those the children found, and wanted to sell them. The offer was refused because the caps were of a different brand than he carried. A checkup of hotels and rooming houses revealed no trace of the man.


Syracuse Journal, June 8
Now that was nasty!

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado — William Trimble and A. Salzman, federal prohibition agents, recently had a narrow escape from death when they raided a ranch house near here. Before entering the house, they peered through a window and saw a .22 caliber pistol placed to that it would fire at the doorway when the door was opened. So they opened the door in a manner that enabled them to escape harm. Inside they seized 55 gallons of whiskey, a still and some mash.


Syracuse Journal, June 16
Unwanted visitors in for a shock

NEW YORK (INS) — Henry Hyman, inventor of the electric pace-making needle, success of which in bringing the apparently dead back to life so interested the American Medical Association, was served with a summons today to appear in court next Monday.

He was charged with experimenting on animals without the authorization of a recognized medical laboratory. Complainant was the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals.

Henry Hyman, uncle of Dr. Albert S. Hyman, whose paper on the resuscitation of the dead caused such a stir at the doctors’ convention, was working in his laboratory when he heard much shouting and banging at the door.

He opened it and a very irate policeman entered. The policeman had encountered one of Hyman’s minor inventions designed to keep out the children of the neighborhood, an electric shocker on the doorknob.

The policeman read the penal code to him, pointing out the maximum sentence of one year.

“And sure you ought to serve it,” said the policeman, “shocking people almost to death and sticking needles into poor little rabbits.”


Syracuse Journal, July 2
Next time use the first floor

Buckling under the weight of a 35,000-pound shipment of South American coffee, a building at 319 East Water Street, occupied by the Paul DeLima Coffee Company, collapsed Friday morning.

The wall on the rear of the building, fronting Erie Boulevard East, bulged outward, and a section of it dropped to the ground, showering parked cars with brick and mortar. No one was in the building.

Commissioner William E. Rapp of the Department of Public Safety directed officials of the Bureau of Buildings to investigate, and then ordered that the building be vacated. The timbers in it, he said, have so dried out that it is unsafe for storage purposes.

About 250 bags of coffee, each weighing between 135 and 150 pounds, were stored on the fourth floor, which sagged under the weight and pushed out the wall.

Firemen helped employees of the company to salvage the coffee, which is in unroasted form.


Syracuse American, August 27
Well, it was a good day to swim

NEW HAVEN, Connecticut (INS) — It wasn’t just the contestants who wound up in the water at Lighthouse Point yesterday during a cross-harbor swimming race here. A section of pier collapsed and about 60 spectators wound up in the water, including Mrs. Mary Sullivan, mother of Alex Sullivan, who won the race.

Mrs. Sullivan was one of five persons injured sufficiently to require hospital treatment. Another 17 people reported minor injuries.

The Associated Press report said the collapse occurred when spectators rushed to the end of the pier, which is used as a dock by a cross-harbor ferry. The added weight was too much for the timbers that supported the pier. According to the AP, the water at this point is 140 feet deep.

Syracuse American, September 17
Still, they made pretty good time

COLON, Canal Zone (INS) — Two American soldiers of the Fort Randolph garrison here, given up for lost when they failed to reappear after a paddling excursion in the Caribbean in a canvas canoe last Sunday, were rescued yesterday 150 miles from the Panamanian coast by the tanker Fray Klasen.