Sigourney, IA Train And Automobile Collision, Oct 1956


Sigourney, Iowa (UP) -- Eight children, all members of the same family, were killed today and their mother was seriously injured when a freight train slammed into a car at a rural crossing near here.
The accident took the lives of all of the children of the RICHARD HAMMES family, who farm three miles east of here. MRS. HAMMES, reported in fair condition at Keokuk County Hospital, was driving the children to school when the accident occurred.
The children included two sets of twins.
The victims included 9-year-old twins, RONNIE and DONNIE; KAREN, 8; LINDA, 7; GARY, 6; ROSEMARY, 3; and one-year-old twins RICKY and VICKY.
MRS. HAMMES was driving the children to a township school about a quarter mile from the crossing.
A Rock Island freight train crashed into the four-door sedan as it crossed the tracks on a gravel road two miles east of here and dragged the car 648 feet. The car had to go up a slight incline as it approached the tracks and MRS. HAMMES apparently neither saw nor heard the approaching switch engine and caboose.
Seven of the children were killed instantly. The eighth died shortly after arriving at the hospital.
The crash matched the worst auto accident in Iowa history. Eight persons also died in an auto crash on July 3, 1955.

Daily Inter Lake Kalispell Montana 1956-10-25

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