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Friday, July 6, 2012

Morrellville Drowning - 1927

Ran across this interesting article while looking for something completely different:

May 2, 1927: MERLE MILLER IS DROWNED IN CREEK IN MORRELLVILLE: Lifeless Body Discovered Yesterday Morning, Head Submerged in Water: WORLD WAR VETERAN: With the head submerged in the shallow water of the St. Clair Run at a point about 50 feet from the old Cambria Water Company pumping station on Chandler Avenue.
The lifeless body of Merle Miller, aged 27, son of Adam Miller, of 159 Blaine Street, Morrellville, was found shortly after 9 o’clock yesterday morning. Investigation has resulted in the belief that the man wandered into the creek Saturday night between 10 and 11 o’clock and was accidentally drowned. A short time after 10 o’clock Saturday night William Milburn of rear of 173 D Street, while on the way home, saw the form of a man lying in an alley near his residence. He shook the man and believing him to be in a stupor, went into his home and called the city police, at the same time getting a flashlight. When he returned to the spot where the man had been lying, he discovered that in the interim he had left the scene. About this time Gerald McGarvey, of rear 121 D Street, and Harry Kyle, of rear 182 D Street, came along and reported having seen a man in another alley and heading toward the run. The citizens after consultation started in that direction but found no trace of him. Other lights were secured and the three made an extensive search along the run from F Street to D Street, cut failed to discover the man. Their search lasted for an hour or more when they gave up the investigation. Police reports state that an officer was sent to the scene in response to the call made by Mr. Milburn, and that he was unable to locate the man seen in the alley.
Yesturday morning about 9:15 o’clock police were notified by E. Sarver, of 180 Chandler Avenue, that there was a body in the creek. The police patrol was sent to the scene and the body removed to the undertaking establishment of George Viering. Death had evidently resulted from drowning as the head was submerged in the shallow water near a clump of bushes, it was reported. Mr. Milburn and others who were searching along the run Saturday night passed by this point a number of times but did not notice the body lying there. A slight bruise on the nose is the only mark on the body, it was stated, discrediting the theory that Miller might have met with foul play, according to the police authorities. The accident victim was a veteran of the World War, have served with the American Expeditionary forces. For the past five weeks he had been making his home with the H. W. Gorman family, 179 F Street. His father and one brother, Vallie Miller, of Cambria Avenue, survive. The body was taken to the father’s home, 159 Blaine Street, from where burial will take place at 2 o’clock tomorrow afternoon, in charge of the Rev. Joseph L. Gingrich, past of the Third Brethren Church. Interment will be in Benshoff Cemetery. Johnstown Post No. 294 of the American Legion, will have charge of the services at the cemetery. It is told that Merle was possibly a member of the KKK and that he was murdered. 

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