Calhoun Natives Killed by Train in 1908


Transcribed by Norma Knotts Shaffer from microfilm of the Calhoun Chronicle dated 1/7/1908.

Details of the Death of Prominent Calhoun People

Homewood, Pa.

I see a short sketch in your paper about the death of Bertha Raybuck and Robert Freed, which I will now try to give the details for the benefit of her sister, Mrs. George Dye, and other friends who live at Freed.

On the evening of the 8th of December Miss Bertha Raybuck, Rob't Freed and Miss Lucile Smith went to church, and on their return, just west of the crossing at Homewood, they stepped on the track to shun a narrow passage, which was guarded by three posts and two railing, to keep any one from falling over a culvert about 18 feet high.  Just at this place a passenger train, No. 13 "Cleveland flyer," going west, and another fast train going east at the same time passed just as they were on the track.  No. 18 hit Bertha and Robert, Bertha was thrown about 15 feet against the railing across the culvert.  She was hit over the right eye and breast, her parents live at Newmansville, Pa., and were all at the funeral.  Robert Freed was born near Freed, and had been working for Arthur Koppel Company, at Koppel, two miles east of Homewood, at $2.50 a day.  He had worked for this company about a year.

He had passed an examination to join the Odd Fellow fraternity at Homewood and would have passed all right the following Saturday night.  "Bob" had steadied himself to be a fine young man and had many friends here and was liked wherever he went.  He did not drink nor go in any bad company.  They were both interred at the Grandview cemetery near Beaver Falls.  Sheridan Freed, of this place, and John Freed, of Washington, Pa., were his only near relatives that was here.  Misses Otie and Alvaretta Raybuck, his two sisters and Mrs. Hannah Raybuck, were at the funeral.

This was said to be the saddest funeral that ever occurred in Homewood.  There are four railroad tracks going through here and is very dangerous at some places.  Three years ago his brother, Charles Freed, got hit and badly wounded at the same place and by the same train. - Friend