I HAVE lived in Bath township thirteen years, where I successfully
conducted a general store, wholesale butchered, and bought poultry.
During this time I have become personally acquainted with nearly every
child in the school.I have known Andrew P. Kehoe since he moved here in
the Spring of 1919. For the last two years I have lived within sixty rods
east of his home. I have tried to tell every detail of the disaster that
would be of interest to the reader. Everything written in this book is
the truth to the best of my ability.
M. J. Ellsworth
Chapter One: The Bath Consolidated School
SCHOOL started in the new consolidated school November, 1922. The census showed that year two hundred and thirty-six scholars. The census of 1926 was three hundred and fourteen scholars, making a fine gain of seventy eight from the time it started. The census taken this year since the blast was two hundred and seventy-three, making a loss of forty-one. There were thirty-eight children killed in the disaster and of course there were some people who moved away, but in nearly all cases some one moved back to replace them.
Of course it made taxes higher and they will continue to be high until the school is paid for. The district during this time has purchased and paid for five acres of land to be used as an athletic field, bought and paid for two lighting plants, and also paid interest and eight thousand dollars on the principal, leaving the township still bonded for thirty-five thousand dollars on the school. When this bond is paid, I don't think the school taxes will be any higher than they were in 1922. The school taxes run as follows: 1922, they were $12.26 on a thousand dollars valuation; in 1923, $18.80; in the year 1924, $18.50; in 1925, $19.20; and in the year 1926, $19.80. What made the taxes higher in 1926 was because twenty-two hundred dollars interest and five thousand dollars on the principal was paid.
A consolidated school is expensive in a
small community, but there are a great many other things to look at. The
children don't have to wade through the snow and mud, they are picked up
at the door. A great many people appreciate not having their children
playing along the road with rough children and standing a chance of
being attacked by some lawless ruffian. The parents can feel that their
children are safe from the time they leave the door to the time they are
brought back, the bus drivers being selected from the most responsible
men of the community who make application. This is a broad statement to
make right after the terrible catastrophe that happened at our school.
I feel that there is not another man in the world who would try to live
a public life and be too big a coward to stand defeat and strike such a
terrible blow at the neighbors of his community. The consolidated school
is a help in a great many ways; the children have the same classmates
up to the time they graduate. In the rural schools they work along until
they pass the eighth grade and then go into a strange school. In some
cases they are large for their age and this causes them a handicap. I
know from experience. Teachers have to be farther advanced to teach in a
consolidated school than they do in a common country school. It is my
firm belief that when everything is taken into consideration, the
consolidated school is the cheapest and best way of education.
Chapter Two: Writer's Experience
ON the morning of May 18, 1927, I was planting melons northeast of my house, about fifteen rods east of the Michigan Central railroad, about sixty rods east of Kehoe's farm, and about one-half mile west and south of the Bath school. The woods prevented a good vision of the schoolhouse, but the chimney could be seen. At nine forty-five, Eastern Standard time, a tremendous explosion came. I couldn't tell which way it came from but as I looked to the northeast and kept swinging around, viewing the ground to the north and then to the west, I stopped. To the west was Kehoe's buildings and at that time a stream of smoke came out of the east gable end of his sheep barn which was followed by flames. I hollered at the section men who were working on the track near by and I said, "Kehoe's barn is on fire," and just as I was saying this the big barn and house and all the other buildings except the hen house started. His house and his large stock barn started in the gable end to the north in the same way that the sheep barn had started. I couldn't see where the other buildings started.
At that time my wife, who was upstairs cleaning house, ran to the window facing the east, which brought her in plain sight of the school. By that time, black and white smoke and dust looked as if it was going about one hundred feet in the air. She yelled, "Mv G-- the school house has blown up." She ran downstairs and I ran toward the house and car. I yelled to the section men who had already started for Kehoe's buildings and I told them that the schoolhouse had blown up, but I could make only part of them hear. What I could make hear ran this way. Before they got here and I could get my car started, we could hear the children screaming and moaning at the school. It seemed as if our car would hardly run. It was a ride that none of us will ever forget.
We got to the school and as we ran across the lawn we met some people who told us our boy, who was in the second grade, was out and all right. I think there were about ten or a dozen people there at that time. The wall had crumbled each way, letting the edge of the roof drop on the brick and cement. There was a pile of children of about five or six under the roof and some of them had arms sticking out, some had legs, and some just their heads sticking out. They were unrecognizable because they were covered with dust, plaster, and blood. There were not enough of us to move the roof. It looked as if hardly anything held it at the top.
Some of the men thought that if we had ropes we could pull the roof over. I said, "I have lots of ropes in my slaughter house and I will go and get them." I ran out to the street to my machine, a Ford pick-up, I had to go south about four blocks and turn west and just as I got nicely around the corner I met Kehoe in his car going toward Bath. He grinned and waved his hand; when he grinned, I could see both rows of his teeth, in fact, I can see them yet. He must have driven down through Bath, then west a mile and a half. He was seen by two men: Jobe T. Sleight, Jr., and Homer Jenison, Bath township farmers. He also passed one of Mr. Witt's little boys who was in the school and running home. He waved at Kehoe and tried to get a ride but Kehoe paid no attention. He must have turned south half a mile, then east dlown by his burning buildings and then to Bath. I think he went west on the north road thinking that he would meet M. W. Keyes, a member of the school board, and his son, Warden Keyes, a school bus driver. He had had some little trouble from time to time with both of these men. Kehoe dropped the last check he gave Warden and as he picked it up, Kehoe said, "My boy, you want to take good care of that check as it is probably the last check you will ever get." If he had met them, he would have likely shot both of them, as he had his rifle with him.
I went to the slaughter house and got the ropes and went back. By that time, lots more people had got there and they wanted a telephone pole for a pry. I happened to know where there was a pole down by Charley Wilkins' barn, which was about six blocks from the school. Someone got in the car with me and we took a small piece of rope and latched the telephone pole on the fenders. We got back to the school and helped carry the pole on top of the debris.
There being so much help around the pole I was back down by the machine when Kehoe blew his car up in the street. This was about half an hour after the school exploded. I stood there almost paralyzed for a few moments and I didn't know what to do. Someone stood by me and said, "Well, we must get those dead people out of the cars." We started out toward the road and found superintendent, Mr. Huyck, and Nelson McFarren dead and Glenn Smith, who was bleeding and rolling on the ground, mortally wounded. We didn't see anything of Kehoe's body, as it was blown down the street and across in a low place. No one knew for about an hour what the explosion really was. When we got to Glenn Smith, he was conscious and he tried to get on his feet and he kept saying, "Leave me, boys, and run, these trees are full of it." He must have thought the blast came out of the trees. I went after a piece of rope to stop the blood but by the time I got back, Eddy Drumheller, the township highway commissioner, had pulled off his belt and was binding the leg. Glenn told him when it was tight enough. Glenn's good wife came at that time. As soon as she saw Glenn's condition, she broke down. Glenn said, "O dear, don't worry about me." He started to turn pale green and was getting weaker and he asked why the doctors didn't come. About that time the ambulances pulled up but Glenn passed away before the ambulance reached the hospital. Mr. Huyck and Mr. McFarren were almost unrecognizable.
About half a block each way cars that were parked along the curb had broken glass and nearly all the tops caught fire from the gas blown over them. These fires were easily put out.
At this time the doctors and nurses began to arrive. Doctor and Mrs. Crum, who were doctor and nurse in the World War, now run a drug store in Bath, they practically turned their store and home into a hospital where they gave all the attention in their power. He was on the job with his sleeves rolled up about an hour before other doctors and nurses crime. They haven't stopped helping yet, as they call on some of the children that are back from the hospital.
The operators in our little exchange stayed at their duty and called doctors, undertakers, and hospitals in Lansing and nearby towns. There were hundreds of people working in the wreckage getting out the children.
The Consumers' Power Company had a gang of men working in this vicinity who assisted a great deal in the rescue and some of the contractors in Lansing sent their entire force; men from shops, and many others turned in to help.
Assistant chief, Paul Lefke, of the Lansing Fire Department, was in command at the central station at the time the call came in. They told him the Bath Consolidited School was on fire. He told three of his men to take the chemical truck to Bath as fast as they could get there. Glenn Brundage, a local fireman who had that day off, drove up in front of the department at that time. Mr. Lefke ran out and got into his car and told him to drive to Bath as fast as he could. They drove into Bath a few minutes ahead of the chemical truck. He ran to the telephone office and had them put in a call for the Lansing operator. As soon as she got the operator on the wire, he told her to connect him up with the fire department, the mayor's office, and the police headquarters. The fire chief, Delfs, answered first, so he told him to send all the men they could spare with equipment to get the children out of the wreckage. It wasn't long until there were thirty-four firemen with Chief Delfs at the school. Before the doctors and nurses arrived Assistant Chief Lefke was sending crippled children to hospitals in private automobiles.
Mr. Lefke was in the basement with Lieutenant Donald McNaughton and Ernest Halderman, state troopers, and Lieutenant Lyle W. Morse, assistant chief of the secret service department of public safety. In a short time the came out with about a bushel of dynamite and told the rescuers and all the other people to get back as there was more dynamite in the building. They went back in the basement and found the clock and batterv. They cut the wires and carried out the rest of the dynamite that all together weighed five hundred and four pounds.Then, they told the people that it was safe to go back to work. When one of these brave men was asked why they risked their lives going into such a place, he calmly said, "That is our duty."
It was about noon before it was found out that Kehoe had brought his wife home from Lansing on Monday night. They immediately thought it was possible for her to have burned up in the house on the farm. Assistant Chief Lefke took the chemical truck out and emptied its contents in the cellar to cool it off enough so they could search for her body. Her charred bodv was not found until the next morning behind what was once called the sheep barn.
The doctors and nurses did wonderful work in taking care of the wounded, they would take from one to three in an ambulance and a doctor and nurse would go with them to the hospital and sometimes where there was room the mothers would go. In other cases, the mothers would follow up, so as to be with their children at the hospital. The Red Cross took headquarters in the Crum drug store.
There were sights that I hope no one will ever have to look at again. Children would be brought out, some with legs dropping, some with arms broken and hanging, some would be moaning, and others would be still. When carrying them, you would know they would never answer their mother's call again. They were all hard to recognize when they were first brought out because they were covered with plaster and cement -and nearly all bleeding to a certain extent.
I saw one mother, Mrs. Eugene Hart, sitting on the bank a short distance from the school with a little dead girl on each side of her and holding a little boy, Percy, who died a short time after they got him to the hospital. This was about the time Kehoe blew his car up in the street, severely wounding Perry, the oldest child of Mr. and Mrs. Hart.
It is a miracle that many parents didn't lose their minds before the task of getting their children out of the ruins was completed. It was between five and six o'clock that evening before the last child was taken out.
When the doctors got here they detailed three men and myself to take the stretchers to gather up the dead and put them in a row on the grass where we could cover them up.
As soon as the coroner got here and swore in a jury, the bodies were removed to the little town hall, that served as a morgue, where at one time during the afternoon there were thirteen ambulances to take the little ones to the undertakers designated by their parents.
Shortly after noon the ladies around town commenced making coffee and sandwiches and getting what they could for the relief workers to eat. A big relief came to these ladies during the afternoon when the Lawrence Baking Company of Lansing sent out a truck load of pies and sandwiches which were served in the community hall during the afternoon and evening. Many thanks to Mr. Lawrence.
By noon the traffic became a problem, but Lieutenant McNaughton, state trooper, soon mastered the situation by placing his men on corners leading to Bath who stayed on their duty until far in the night. He also kept men on duty watching the school all night. The following Sunday after the explosion, May 22, 1927, was the big problem of handling the traffic, but through the faithful duty of our sheriff, Bart Fox, and his deputies on the north, and Lieutenant McNaughton's men on the east, south, and the west, this problem was solved.
It is estimated that from sixty to eighty thousand cars passed through Bath that day without a single accident except, I understand, one boy backed up in front of a car and was slightly bruised by the fender. Through this terrible catastrophe, we have learned the great value of our state troopers.
On Sunday, May 22, following our terrible catastrophe, I think we had the greatest demonstration of American sympathy ever awarded a grief stricken community. Thousands and thousands of cars stayed in line for hours. I have a gas station one-half mile west of Bath on the main road to Lansing, where there was a double row of traffic all day. In the afternoon it took about four hours to get three miles, but I don't remember of hearing a single horn sounded. It was like a great funeral procession. Everyone's heart was filled with sympathy for this grief stricken community. There were a great many funerals this day and it was a handicap getting to the cemeteries but I don't think the grief stricken parents have any hard feeling toward the people who came fromn many miles around to see a sight which I hope human eyes will never rest on again. I sincerely hope that everyone who visited our little community feels that he was met courteously and without prejudice or graft in any respect.
We feel very grateful to the many people who have contributed so freelv both financaally and sympathetically.
An example of fullest cooperation at Bath, Mich., schoolhouse wreck (taken out of the August 15, 1927, number of the Red Cross Courier.)
The relief situation at Bath, Mich., created bv a maniac's act of blowing up a school full of children, is being handled with efficiency by the Chapter in the county of Ingham and adjoining counties. The Rev. Edwin W. Bishop, of Lansing, Chairman of Ingham County Chapter, in his report gives a clear picture of the distressing event. The Case Committee mentioned in this report included William Smith, an attorney of St. Johns, formerly a resident of Bath; Mrs. L. A. Warner, of Bath; Chairman Bishop S. E. Ewing, supervisor of Bath township; State Senator George Hunter, of St Johns, supervisor of Clinton county; Albert Detluff, secretary, Bath school Board, who acted as adviser to the committee appointed by Governor Green; Charlotte W. Lockhart, of the Social Service Bureau, Lansing; Elba L. Morse, nursing field representative, American Red Cross; Lucile Fulk, Executive Secretary, Ingham County Chapter.
"Upon request," writes the Rev. Mr. Bishop, "I have prepared an outline report of the history of what will probably be known as the Bath disaster. In accepting this appointment I have only acted as the mouthpiece of all the agencies which had been busy in extending relief. With the exception of the trained workers, we were all civilians engaged in our own particular work or professions. I think I am safe in saying that not one of us had been face to face with such a disaster as this where we had certain duties to perform. We were, therefore, unprepared in disaster technique, but we were willing to learn; we had the advice of trained executives, and we tried to do our duty as we saw it day by day. If there has been remissness anywhere it has been due to lack of knowledge and experience rather than to wilful intention.
"When the news of the disaster came to St. Johns and Lansing the organizations of the Red Cross begin to function according to schedule. A meeting of the boards was thought of earlier, but there were two verv good reasons for not holding it. Our trained workers have been too busy in the work of relief to have been spared for a board meeting, and it seemed wise that the executives themselves should not be interrupted in the work that fell to them. Now that the pressure for immediate relief work is over, we have called all the directors of both boards together that they might be the first to be acquainted with what has alreadv been undertaken and accomplished and that their advice might be given on further procedure."
"A tribute to the splendid cooperation which has been extended by the individual citizens of Bath, by all the couuty and state authorities, and bv the social service agencies in our own counties and nearby cities is more than due. One of our visiting trained workers has stated that she has never witnessed cooperating agencies work together any more smoothly than in this disaster. We are indeed glad that this has been so. Our memories will be cheered with the thought of the successful team work."
"In coming now to the picture itself, I must make it an etching with bold outlines rather than a steel engraving overloaded with details, and I shall purposely omit descriptions of the causes or of the disaster itself, concentrating only upon relief adopted and undertaken.
"On Wednesday morning, May 18, at about 9:45 the first explosion occurred in the consolidated schoolhouse at Bath and naturally the first measures of relief were taken by those in the immediate vicinity. Villagers gathered immediately and began to give all the aid within their power. County and State authorities were quickly notified. St. Johns and Lansing got the news. Word was received at the Social Service Bureau in Lansing, which immediately communicated with the Ingham County Red Cross office across the hall. Judge C. B. Collingwood, Chairman of the Disaster Committee, was notified by Mrs. Leona Weldon, who was the secretary in charge of the Lansing office during the absence of Miss Lucile Fulk, who was attending a national convention at Des Moines, Iowa. The Chairman of the Ingham County Red Cross Chapter was in Rochester, near Detroit, addressing a State conference meeting. Much credit should be given to Mrs. Weldon who, though inexperienced with such a disaster, efficiently set the organization at its task."
"Dr. Milton Shaw of Lansing was the first physician outside of Bath township to appear on the scene, quicklv followed by the firemen and the police of Lansing. To them were also soon added the State police and the police of Lansing, and all these bodies immediately began to render efficient service. A corps of doctors and nurses, representatives of hospitals of Lansing and St. Johns and neighboring vicinage, came quickly to the scene and began their work of mercy. A corner of the school yard was used for first aid and the ambulances transported those more severelv injured to the hospitals. The dead were reverently laid in a row by themselves and were removed upon identification to homes or undertaking establishments. Mrs. Leota Abrams, of the Social Service Bureau of Lansing, was a tower of strength here. A morgue was opened in the Town hall in Bath. By 1 p.m. most of the severely injured had been transported to the hospitals."
"Rescue work continued through the afternoon, aided by the wrecking crews of the Reniger and the Christman comstruction companies and the Reo and Olds motor companies of Lansing. A cordon was thrown around the grounds that rescue work might not be hampered. The State police controlled the continually increasing traffic. By the aid of electric lights rescue work was carried on into the night until it was certain that no bodies were left in the ruins. The first day of the tragedy was over and the reparative constructive forces of society had demonstrated their use and effectiveness. The Red Cross headquarters in Lansing was kept open until 11:30 that night, -answering telephone calls, checking up lists of dead and injured, giving information and planning for the next day."
"Fortunately for us all, Miss Elba Morse, National representative of the Red Cross, was at Stanton, in Montcalm County, where she heard of the disaster. Miss Morse, with Miss Marv Keaveny, Red Cross nurse of Montcalm Chapter, immediately drove to Lansing, reaching there in the night. On Thursday morning they were on the ground with the Red Cross Chapter executives of Clinton and Ingham Counties, and with Miss Charlotte Lockhart of the Social Service Bureau of Lansing."
"Through the courtesy of Dr. and Mrs. J. A. Crum of Bath a Red Cross field office was installed and a typewriter secured, and this room has been a clearing house for all of the relief agencies. Dr. and Mrs. Crum have also most generously put at the disposal of several committees other rooms in their home. And these headquarters have been busy scenes of activity with many volunteer helpers from St. Johns, Lansing and the vicinity, as well as the executive secretaries and the nurses, loaned by the adjoining counties, ably assisting."
"The relief work soon naturally divided itself into different committees which functioned in case investigations, in hospital visitation, in home nursing, food and bedding, and in arrangemnents for funerals. A committee of ministers called at homes where death had entered and advised and comforted the sorrowing. Where the family had no choice of an officiating clergyman or had made no arrangements, the committee offered its services."
"On the afternoon of the disaster Governor Green and Mrs. Green visited the scene, as did Mayor and Mrs. Troyer of Lansing, and Mayor Schoenhals of St. Johns. Executive action was taken on Thursday afternoon in the Governor's proclamation to the citizens of Michigan to rally with volunteer contributions for immediate relief and for permanent rehabilitation, and which appointed a committee to take charge of raising these funds. At a meeting that after noon in the Governor's office, with the Governor and representatives of the Clinton and Ingham County Chapters of the Red Cross, it was understood that the immediate relief funds, as is customary in such cases, should be distributed under the advice of the Red Cross, while any funds for public property rehabilitation should be in control of the Governor's Committee. A disaster case committee to consider the expenditure of such relief as the Governor's Committee could offer was appointed by a general counsel, which was called in the Red Cross headquarters on Thursday afternoon, comprised of all the agencies that were on the ground. This disaster case committee has held four meetings, having completed its recommendations."
"May it be said, however, in this connection that the principle underlying Red Cross relief is need, not loss. The Red Cross, prohibited by its own charter from becoming an insurance company, cannot reimburse victims of disaster, much as its heart and wishes might be so prompted, with blanket rehabilitation ..... The Red Cross, ably assisted by other social service organizations, both locallv and farther afield, especially by the Social Service Bureau of Lansing, which has been untiring in its efforts of cooperation, have thrown themselves whole heartedlv into this work of immediate relief according to need .... And if there be any questions arising, as freqently arise in other communities, that some of the money collected has gone for salaries and equipment, may the Red Cross and these other social organizations concerned rather proudly say that the resources of these organizations with their trained workers and voluntary workers have been willingly and freely given to this stricken community without a dollar of compensation going to any of us for expenditure of time and effort involved."
"In reviewing and tabulating acknowledgments of assistance, space will permit me only to make brief mention of organizations. The names of individuals will be found in other more particular records. Among the organizations that should be mentioned as having cooperated in our work of the last week are the following: Rotary Club and American Legion of St. Johns; Board of Supervisors, Clinton County; Clinton County Chapter, American Red Cross; Social Service Bureau, Lansing; Salvation Army, Lansing; St. Lawrence, Sparrow, and Lange hospitals, Lansing; hospital of St. Johns; Red Cross Chapters of St. Johns, Grand Rapids, Ann Arbor, Pontiac, Clare, and Lansing; medical associations of Clinton and Ingham Counties; the State police; police and fire departments of Lansing; the Governor's committee; ministers' funeral committee; Michigan Children's Aid Society; Service Battery of 119th Division, U. S. Army, cots and blankets; Reo and Olds motor car companies; Boy Scouts of America; our undertakers who supplied ambulances."
"If the combined agencies represented in
this report have given, they have also received. It has been an
educational experience in humanitarianism. We have all been learners. We
have broadened our sympathies and increased our contacts. Like ships
that pass in the night, we shall probably never be thrown together again
in like circumstances, but as we have passed we have tried to give a
Chapter Three: Life of Andrew Kehoe
ANDREW P. KEHOE, the world's worst demon, was born February 1, 1872, on a farm about four miles north and east of Tecumseh, Michigan. He was one of thirteen children, all born there. Their birthplace is shown in the picture. His father and mother moved there from New York State when they were both young. His father was a well-liked, prosperous farmer. He had acquired three hundred and twenty-five acres of land.
Andrew's first education started in a country school not far from his father's farm and he graduated from Tecumseh High School. He later took a course in electrical engineering at the Michigan State College, East Lansing. While he was in college, he met Miss Nellie Price whom he later married. After leaving college, he went west and his people didn't know much about him for several years but they knew he worked in St. Louis, Missouri, as an electrician in a park.
After some years, he came back and married Miss Nellie Price. Andrew and his wife were born and raised as Roman Catholics and they went to church until there was a new one built. He was assessed four hundred dollars which he made no effort to pay. After some time the priest went out to see why they didn't come to church or pay the assessment. Kehoe ordered him to the road and told him if he didn't get there, he would see that he got there. After that time, he never went to church and the neighbors said that he never allowed his wife to go.
The original homestead of a hundred and eighty-five acres was later sold to Andrew. He never farmed it as other farmers do and he tried to do everything with his tractor. He was in the height of his glory when fixing machinery or tinkering. He was always trying new methods in his work, for instance, hitching two mowers behind his tractor. This method at different times did not work and he would just leave the hay standing. He also put four sections of drag and two rollers at once behind his tractor. He spent so much time tinkering that he didn't prosper. The neighbors told the writer that he was very severe with his stock, his horses especially.
The writer interviewed some of Andrew Kehoe's neighbors and classmates of that locality. They all told practically the same story. He was comparatively sociable when he was in school but as he grew older, he became more distant and more inclined to want his own way. He didn't want to have anything to do with people who didn't do as he wanted them to.
Andrew Kehoe's mother died when he was quite young, and in time, his father married again. Andrew didn't get along very well with his stepmother. One day she went to town and returned about meal time. She went to light her oil stove, but someone had tampered with it and it exploded, saturating her with oil, and set her on fire. Andrew stood and watched her burn for a while and then he got a pail of water and threw over her. It spread the flames and made them worse. His stepmother died from the effects. The fire was extinguished before it burned the house. Andrew was only about fourteen years of age at that time. Although there was never any trouble made about it, the neighbors whom the writer talked with were of the opinion that Andrew knew something about what was wrong with the stove.
He had his neighbors arrested for hunting on his farm but he later gave one of these men, whom he liked pretty well, ten dollars. All the neighbors that the writer talked with said Mrs. Kehoe was a lovely woman.
On another occasion, he bought eight steers from a man and when he got home he drove them in the clover pasture. The clover was wet and two of them bloated and died. He skinned them and sold the hides and went back to the man and told him that he ought to pay him half of what he lost on the steers. The man, of course, refused this. After that when he met him face to face on the street, he would not speak.
Some years afterwards, Kehoe put his farm in the real estate man's hands to sell. This same man, seeing the advertisement, went to look at the farm before he went to the real estate office. When he stopped to ask Kehoe if the farm was for sale, Kehoe said, "Yes, but why in h--- didn't you come two weeks ago, before it was turned over to the real estate hands and I would have saved the commission." The man said, of course, that he didn't know anything about it. He asked Kehoe if he would show him the boundary line, which he did. The man walked alone over it and being satisfied with the place, he went to the real estate office and closed the deal. He gave Kehoe eight thousand dollars in cash, which was his equity.
Kehoe came to Bath and bought the farm of the Price estate. The purchase price was twelve thousand dollars. He paid six thousand dollars in cash on the principal and he gave a six thousand dollar mortgage. When he got nearly ready to move, he went across the road to his neighbor and told him he had fifteen cords of wood to sell because he couldn't move it. When the neighbor told him he had all the wood he needed, Kehoe said he was going to sell all the wood for a dollar and a half a cord, which was about half price. He impressed it on his mind that he must not leave one stick as he didn't want the man who bought the farm to have anything that he hadn't bought. The man bought the wood.
Before he moved to Bath, he sold his sheep and cattle. He only brought three horses and some very fine thoroughbred hogs. He had two car loads of farmn machinery. He went to see David Harte, who lives directly across the road from the Price farm, on Saturday and on Sunday a motor truck came through with Kehoe's furniture. His wife had come through to Lansing and was staying with her sisters. When the furniture arrived, he tried to call his wife. Not being able to get her over the telephone, he said he knew about where she was, insinuating that she was at church. David Harte helped him unload his implements and deliver them to the farm. This was in the spring of 1919. They were very neighborly during this year. At that time the Kehoes had no car so Mrs. Harte took Mrs. Kehoe to Lansing with her each week to shop and deliver their butter and eggs.
Mrs. Harte had a little fox terrier dog of which she thought a great deal, but it had a habit of running out on the lawn and barking. It never went into the road. It came up missing in March, 1920, and they looked all over the farm for it, but they could not find it. She went over and asked Mr. Kehoe if he had seen anything of her dog. He said that it was burying a bone beside his road fence and he shot the d--- nuisance. The dog never went into Kehoe's yard, but it must have annoyed him by barking on the lawn. They didn't have any words over his killing the dog, but Mrs. Harte quit taking them to Lansing.
Mr. Harte and Kehoe changed work in thrashing and neighbored back and forth to a certain extent. About three or four years later, Mr. Harte went over to borrow a spring seat for his wagon and Kehoe had the team on his manure spreader. One of his horses was his old light driving horse. The next day they saw a truck from the Pregulman's rendering works drive away from Kehoe's place with a horse. When David took the spring seat home, he said, "I see you had bad luck with your horse." Kehoe said, "Yes, d--- him, he ought to have been killed years ago. He didn't pull and we had a mix-up and when I got through with him he was dead." He generally used his tractor on the manure spreader.
No matter how much Kehoe worked around machinery, he was never seen dirty or greasy. If he got greasy, he would go to the house and clean up. The last time he helped Mr. Harte thrash, he went across the road to his home at noon and washed and put on a clean shirt and then he went back for his dinner. The next year, 1926, he didn't have any grain to thrash. He always put his tools in their place when he got through with them. His barns were always clean. Several people have made the remark that his barns were cleaner than a great many houses. He farmed the same here as he did on his old homestead.
In the spring of 1925, I bought from him what was the tenant house on the Kehoe farm. The day I bought it I asked him if it would be all right to pay fifty dollars down and two hundred dollars when I got ready to move the old house. Kehoe said, "NO, I am selling it because I want to use the money." I had to pay him all of it right then.
The following fall, I had a steam boiler to install in my slaughter house. I asked Mr. Kehoe if he would come up and help me, which he did very readily. He ran the pipes to the scalding tanks and showed me all about the boiler. Being an old boiler, it needed some repairs and pipe fittings. He had part of these in his workshop. He said he was going to town the next day and would get the parts that he didn't have; this he did. Being no mechanic, I had some trouble from time to time with the boiler and I would always call Kehoe and he would come right up and fix it and would never take any money for his work.
I put up a gas station in front of my house this spring. I was setting up an air compressor temporarily on Saturday so I could have it to use on Sunday. That was the Saturday before he blew the schoolhouse up on Wednesday. I needed a three-eighths union to connect the pipes so I went down to Kehoe's and told him what I wanted. He got them for me and when I told him that in a week or so, I was going to set it up permanently down cellar and pipe it out, he said, "When you get ready to do that, come down if you need any tools. Yes, and I will come up and help you."
Kehoe had the Lansing and the Bath telephones. I only had the Bath telephone so when mine was out of order, I used theirs and I was always made welcome. I went down there to use their telephone last winter, about February, 1927, and he had just been shooting at the target. When I got through using the telephone, he showed me his new thirty Winchester bolt action rifle that he had bought two or three months before. I had had a general store and when I sold out, I kept one rifle. I told him that I had never shot it and I would bring it up and shoot with him when he was going to practice. He told me to come up anytime, but I didn't think anything about it again until spring on Thursday, May 12, 1927, he came along by my house and stopped where I was working out in front and we talked for quite a few minutes. During the conversation, he reminded me that I had not come down to shoot as I told him I would. I told him I had been busy but if he would bring his gun up to my place the next day we would shoot here. He said that he would do that and the next morning about eight-thirty o'clock, May 13, 1927, he brought along pasteboard targets which we nailed on a board and set up. We shot three times apiece from one hundred yards with a rest. We each put one in the bull's-eye and the others were very close, except I had one that was wild. Then we shot from fifty yards offhand. The first time we shot, the first three we were about even, then we changed guns and shot three times each and he beat me. Then we each took our own gun and shot twelve or fifteen times more and he beat me continually after that. He showed no signs of nervousness under the great strain that he must have been under. When he started to go home, I walked out to his machine with him and there was a box in the back about two feet long and twelve or fourteen inches wide which was about half full of rifle shells. I believe there must have been a thousand of them.
I think it was in the spring of 1922 when he volunteered his service free of charge to the Farm Bureau on the follow-up drive for membership. In the fall of 1925, he hired Jobe T. Sleight, Jr., to take him to Jackson to see about dynamite for farm blasting. He bought and brought back five hundred pounds of pyrotol, telling them he would have some to sell to the neighbors if they wanted it. No one knew of him using any of it except on New Year's eve of 1927. There was a tremendous explosion at just twelve o'clock. Mr. Sleight did not hear the explosion but he was talking with some men a few days afterwards who were telling about the explosion and of course Mr. Sleight, knowing of his having this dynamite, thought it must have been him. When Mr. and Mrs. Sleight were returning from town one day, they stopped to see Mrs. Kehoe. She had just returned from the hospital where she had been nearly all winter. While they were there, Kehoe came in the house and during the conversation Mr. Sleight said, "What were you trying to do over here on New Year's Eve?" Kehoe told him he was just trying out a clock system. He said that he put the dynamite out in the garden and the clock down cellar and set it for twelve o'clock. It was the last time Mr. Sleight ever talked to Kehoe, as Mrs.Kehoe went back to the hospital. She was with her sisters when Kehoe went after her on Monday night just before the explosion on Wednesday. She was not seen again until they found her charred body back of the sheep barn a day after the tragedy. He must have murdered her as soon as he got home with her Monday night or before retiring Tuesday night. When she was found, there was evidence that she was dressed at the time she was placed in what was once a hog chute mounted on two wheels. The wood had all burned away and one foot was over the axle. There were corset stays laying around her, a box of silverware on one side, and an iron box containing between three and four hundred dollars in money on the other.
Mrs. Kehoe's people lived in Bath township when she was a girl, and the people thought a great deal of her. God, alone, only knows what she suffered during her married life, as she was no woman to complain. She was always cheerful and pleasant. The people, knowing her fine character, were glad to see her come back into the neighborhood. They were immediately invited to attend parties and clubs in which they soon became members. Mr. Kehoe was not very prominent. He was sociable but when you would be talking with him it seemed as though he weighed every word before he spoke. He was very careful not to say anything about his own business. Both were members of the Bath Social club. The club met about every two weeks during the winter months and the evenings were spent playing progressive euchre. If any of the players at the table with Mr. Kehoe didn't play just right he immediately told them that they were not playing according to the instructions given by Hoyle. The people didn't get angry at him but they didn't like his severity at a social party. On one occasion the Social club met at the Kehoe home where they spent a pleasant evening. Refreshments were served at eleven o'clock and then Mr. Kehoe furnished each man with a different puzzle that he made himself. These puzzles were made mostly of heavy copper and he said that he had many more. They showed master workmanship. He must have spent much time making them.
He never attracted much attention around
the neighborhood. There was something about him that no matter how good
a friend you thought you were of him, there always seemed to be a
distant feeling. He would give you a straight answer with no explanation.
I was talking with Mr. Kehoe during farmers' week at the Michigan State
College, East Lansing, in February, 1926. While I was talking with him I
asked him if he was going over to the college. He said, "No, they would
just tell the farmers a lot of things that were impossible to do." He
said, "last night I was listening over my radio to a speaker who started
in by telling what colleges he had been to and what countries he had
been in. I shut that off and went to the telephone and called the
college and asked them what in h--- they wanted of a speaker who would
just get up and brag about himself. That's the last time I am going to
listen to them this week." I was talking with Kehoe early this spring,
in 1927. The snow was off the ground and it was freezing nights and
thawing day times. I said, "This is not very good wheat weather." He
said, "No, and I am glad of it. The farmers ought not to raise any more
wheat until the country needed it badly. The d--- fool farmers will
never be any better off than they are now because if they do raise
anything they will brag about it to everyone else." He also said that it
would be like the d--- fool up in northern Michigan that raised an extra
big crop of potatoes last year and then came down to the college at East
Lansing during farmers' week and told the world how he done it, so
everybody would know as much about it as he did.
Chapter Four: Kehoe On The School Board
THE Bath school tax in 1922 was twelve dollars and twenty-six cents on a thousand dollars valuation. Mr. Kehoe began to complain about his taxes being so high. In 1923 the school board had to buy five acres of land for an athletic field and it also had to buy and install a lighting plant of their own, which made the taxes for 1923 eighteen dollars and eighty cents. This enraged Kehoe. In fact, I didn't hear anyone say they were very pleased about it. He felt that he was hurt the worst. His valuation was ten thousand dollars on eighty acres of land, but the township was not to blame for that as it would take thirty thousand dollars to replace the buildings on the Kehoe farm. During 1923 and 1924, Mr. Kehoe insinuated to some of his neighbors that if he was on the school board he would cut down the expenses.
At an annual school meeting that was held July 14, 1924, A. P. Kehoe was nominated and elected to fill the expired term of Enos Peacock. He was sworn in by Alonzo Webster, notary public, to act as a trustee for a term of three years. Mr. Kehoe was appointed treasurer of the school by the school board for a period of one year. He was reappointed the following two years as treasurer. By a motion made by Mr. M. W. Keyes, he was placed under a ten thousand dollar bond. His books were always posted up to date and found in good condition. He had considerable trouble with the school board from time to time because he would not give and take on any subject. He wanted his own way and if he didn't get it, he would make a motion to adjourn.
He seemed to have no use for the superintendent, Mr. E. E. Huyck. As soon as he was on the board, he started to get rid of him. On one occasion, he told Mr. Huyck that he would have to leave the board meetings because he had no business to sit with the board. He was shown that if they wanted state aid they would have to let the superintendent sit with them. The superintendent had no voice in any of the meetings. On another occasion, Mr. Huyck wanted a summer vacation. Kehoe fought not to let him have any but when he saw that the rest of the board was in favor of giving him a vacation, he at once made a motion to let him have one week. Even little things like this made him angry and he would make a motion to adjourn. The only fair treatment that he ever showed Mr. Huyck was when he made a motion which carried, giving him jurisdiction over the timing of the bus drivers.
In the spring of 1925, Mrs. Bert Detluff died after she was elected as township clerk. The township board appointed Mr. Kehoe to act as township clerk until the next spring election. At that election Mr. Kehoe ran for the office but he was defeated because the people had heard of the trouble he had on the school board.
Three swarms of bees got in the partition of the school building in some way; during the winter when the schoolhouse got warm, the bees would crawl out and drop down. This caused much annoyance among the children. The school board authorized Mr. Huyck, the superintendent, and Mr. Hugget, principal, to experiment in killing the bees. At the next meeting of the school board, Mr. Huyck reported that he was unsuccessful in killing the bees. Mr. Kehoe said that he could kill those bees, so the job was immediately turned over to him. That was the last of the bees.
During the summer vacation months in 1926, Kehoe did some repairing and rewiring which gave him free access to the schoolhouse. This is probably when he planned and did a lot of his fiendish work.
The last board meeting that Kehoe attended was on May 5, 1927. The only thing that he did during this meeting besides smiling his approval of what the rest did was to make a motion to advance Mr. Detluff, a member of the board and also purchasing agent, twenty-five dollars to meet small bills. This was just thirteen days before the tragedy.
On Monday evening of May 16, 1927, two
days before the tragedy, Mrs. Blanche Harte, fifth grade teacher, called
Mr. Kehoe over the telephone and asked him if she could bring her class
to his woods on Thursday for a picnic. He told her that would be all
right and after asking her a few questions about some school records
they hung up. A short time afterwards Kehoe called her over the
telephone and asked her if she couldn't just as well have her picnic on
Tuesday, as it might rain Thursday. I suppose he wanted the children to
have a little fun before he killed them.
Chapter Five: Made Own Troubles
KEHOE had trouble on the school board and he very seldom voted the same as the other members.
In the spring of 1926 he ran for township clerk and was defeated.
He tried to get them to cut the valuation down on his farm. He also tried to get the people who held the mortgage to take it off, telling them he had paid too much for the farm, but of course, he couldn't get this done.
He was going to have his own way at any cost. He planned on destroying everything. He cut the wire fences on the farm and put dynamite in his tractor so that it blew all to pieces while the tool shed was burning. All the stock that he had at this time was two horses. They were tied in the barn and their feet were wired together so that rescuing them during the fire would be impossible.
About a month before he did this, he gave the best one of these horses to a neighbor, A. McMullen, and delivered it himself. Mr. McMullen kept the horse for a few days, then he got to thinking that it might be Kehoe was going to commit suicide because he hadn't done any work on the farm for nearly a year, so he brought the horse back to Kehoe.
Mr. Kehoe carried all the rails and lumber that there were around the buildings into the tool shed. I suppose that was to make sure that everything would be destroyed. He girdled all the small shade trees and sawed the grape vines off next to the ground and set them back on the stumps so that they would not be noticed.
I think that he was very disappointed when he got down to the schoolhouse and saw that all the dynamite had not exploded. I think if all the dynamite had exploded, it would have killed all the children, teachers, and the superintendent. So much of it being in loose form, it is probable that the ruins would have caught fire. Then, he probably would have driven his machine which was loaded with burs, bolts, scrap iron, drag teeth, and rifle shells up into the crowd and blown it up, killing and injuring many people. I think he commenced planning this revengeful murder right after he was defeated in the spring election of 1926.
What Mr. Howell told me on May 19, 1927, the next day after the Bath Catastrophe.
Mr. Sidney Howell, a farmer living about
sixty rods west of the Kehoe farm and who was very friendly with Kehoe,
came by my gas station and stopped. While he was here, he told me that
at the time of the explosion at the school house, he was working with
his two boys in his driveway. Mr. Melvin Armstrong, another neighbor,
had just driven up with his machine and stopped. A few seconds later,
Kehoe's buildings started to burn and Mr. Howell said that they got into
Armstrong's car and as they were coming down the road they saw Kehoe
come out of the house and run toward the tool shed. Mr. Howell got out
of the machine in front of the house and Mr. Armstrong went to get a
place to park. They went into the driveway and up by the back door.
Kehoe came out of the smoke with his machine, a Ford pick-up, and drove
up even with where they were. He had a funnel in the gas tank. He
stopped and took it out, then looked in and picked up the cap and
screwed it on. Kehoe walked over where the men were. They were about
ready to walk in the back door when Kehoe said, "You are friends of mine,
don't go in there, go down to the school." They turned and walked toward
the road and Kehoe leisurely walked to the machine and drove toward Bath.
Chapter Six: The Farm Conditions
THE Price estate still holds the mortgage of six thousand dollars on the farm. After all the buildings except the chicken coop had been burned, the administrators called the insurance company to get an adjustment for the loss. They found that Kehoe had let the insurance drop, so there was no insurance at the time.
Last year, 1926, he paid his personal tax, but did not pay his real estate tax. The way the law would look at it, the farm will go to his estate, by presuming that his wife died first. When the year arrives from the time the foreclosure proceedings started, which was some time before Kehoe's death, there will be six thousand dollars principal, considerable interest and two years' taxes.
This is a mighty blow to the Price estate,
as this amount is only about one-quarter of what it will take to replace
Our hearts are burdened for you today,
Thinking of your dear ones, gone away;
They have preceded us for a while,
To join the angel rank and file.
We know you will miss them day by day,
For we, too, have gone that way;
Other hearts your deep sorrow share,
Thus, in a degree, help you to bear,
The grievous burden laid at your door,
Making very heavy your hearts and sore;
Still behind the great unknown,
God is always watching over His own.
--- Chas. M. Armstrong.
Bauerle, Arnold Victor
Burnett, Floyd Edwin
Cushman, Ralph Albert
Ewing, Earl Edwin
Foote, Katherine Onalee
Geisenhaver, Carlyle Walter
Harte, Blanche Elizabeth, teacher
Harte, Stanley Horace
Harte, LaVere Robert
Harte, Gailand Lyle
Hall, Willa Marie
Hart, Iola Irene
Hart, Vivian Oletta
Hart, Percy Eugene
Hoppener, Francis Otto
Hunter, Cecial Lorn
Huyck, Emory E.,
Johns, Doris Elaine
Kehoe, Andrew P.
McFarren, Clarence Wendell
McDonald, Thelma Irene
Medcoff, J. Emerson
Nickols, Emma Amelia
Richardson, Richard Dibble
Robb, Elsie Mildred
Shirts, Pauline Mae
Smith, Glenn O.
Weatherby, Miss Hazel Iva,
Witchell, Elizabeth Jane
Witchell, Lucile June
Woodman, Harold LeMoyne
Zimmerman, George Orval
Barnes, Ruth M.
Fritz, Mr. F. M.
Gutekunst, Miss Leona, teacher
Gubbins, Miss Eva, teacher
Hobert, Helen E.
Hobert, Ralph R.
Hollister, Carlton F.
Huffman, June Rose
Huffman, Donald J.
Hunter, Florence Edith
Matson, Miss Nina, teacher
McCoy, Pauline Mae
Mast, Lee Henry
Perrone, Mrs. J.
Proctor, Earl Fred
Proctor, Ralph Edmund
Reed, Lillian M.
Richardson, Virginia Blanche
Richardson, Martha Harriette
Seeley, Ivan Freemont
Stebleton, Gail Edmund
Sweet, Ava Thelma
Chapter Seven: Biographies
Glenn O. Smith was born in Bath township, May 18, 1894. He began his education in Bath school district number nine and later graduated from Bath High School. He went to Michigan State College for one year and he also went one year to the Ferris Institute. After finishing school, he worked in Detroit and Chicago.
He then returned to Bath and married Miss Ester McFarren. One child was born to them, Betty Marie, born February 27, 1921, and died December 28, 1924. This was a terrible shock to both of them.
They worked her father's farm in Bath township until 1920 when he was appointed postmaster.
Glenn was well liked and noted for his honesty. Because of his courage, he often put himself in danger to help other people. He worked faithfully in the wreckage trying to get children out until he became faint and realized that he would have to get some fresh air. He went out to the sidewalk and he was with his father-in-law, Nelson McFarren, and Mr. Huyck, the superintendent, when Kehoe blew his car up in the street.
Glenn's right leg was blown nearly off at the thigh and his left leg had a terrible cut above the ankle. He was still conscious when help reached him. As the men bound his leg with a belt furnished by some one in the crowd, he nformed them when it was tight enough. He must have been hurt internally. The ambulances began to arrive about that time and they rushed him to the hospital. He commenced sinking and he died about the time they reached the hospital.
He leaves besides his many friends a heart-broken wife,
two brothers and two sisters. Interment was in Bath cemetery.
Nelson McFarren was killed with Glenn O. Smith, postmaster, and E. E. Huyck, the superintendent, when Kehoe called them to his car and blew it up.
Mr. McFarren was born in Washtenaw county, Michigan, May 25, 1852. He came to Bath with his father, John McFarren, at the age of fifteen and assisted his father in clearing up a homestead. On attaining his majority, however, he left home and started out in life for himself soon afterwards purchasing forty acres. After clearing and building, he purchased a second forty acres which he logged off and soon had under cultivation, one of the best farms in Bath township.
In March, 1883, occurred the marriage of Nelson McFarren and Miss Ada Saxton, a native of Oakland county, Michigan, and a daughter of J. B. Saxton, who was born in New York and came to this state at an early age, establishing his home in Clinton county.
In the family of Mr. and Mrs. McFarren there were born three children, Floyd who died in young manhood and Harry who has been a rural mail carrier out of Bath for thirteen years, except during the World War. He came back without getting wounded, except for being gassed. His daughter, Esther, was the wife of Glenn O. Smith.
Mr. McFarren retired from the farm and moved into Bath village about 1920 where he had resided until he was killed by Kehoe.
He leaves besides the two children, his wife, Mrs. Ada
McFarren, and many friends. Burial was in Bath.
Emory E. Huyck, born in Butternut, Michigan, July 3, 1894, graduated from Carson City High School and went some to the Ferris Institute. After spending some time in the army during the World War, he entered the Michigan State College at East Lansing, January, 1919, taking Bachelor's degree and agriculture. Mr. Huyck graduated on June 21, 1922, taking a position as superintendent of the Bath Consolidated School the same summer. He held the job until he was killed, May 18, 1927, by Andrew Kehoe.
Blanche Elizabeth, the youngest daughter of Martin and Annadella Beuhler, was born February 24, 1897, in Victor township. She graduated from the tenth grade at Dewitt. Later she graduated from the Lansing High School. The following year she graduated from the Clinton County Normal.
June 4, 1919, she was united in marriage to Roscoe Harte of Bath. The first year of their married life was spent on his father's farm, later moving to their own farm west of Bath. A year ago they moved to their present home in Bath.
She was a conscientious worker in school, church and social activities, and for the past eleven years was a teacher in the rural schools of Clinton County.
She was severely injured in the terrible explosion of the Bath school. She passed away at the Sparrow hospital, May 19, 1927.
Besides her husband, she leaves her father and mother, one sister, Mrs. Stella Schoals, numerous relatives and a host of dear friends.
The funeral was held at her late home in Bath.
Reverend Coleman of Dewitt officiated and Mrs. Mabel Hunter sang. Many people
followed her remains to its final resting place, the Wilsey cemetery. Six old
classmates acted as pall bearers.
Hazel Iva Weatherby, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Weatherby, was born September 20, 1906, met with tragic death, May 18, 1927, while on duty as teacher at Bath.
Hazel finished the grades at Weatherby school at an early date, and graduated with the class of 1924, at Lakeview High School. Her course in higher education was taken at Mt. Pleasant, receiving her life certificate in 1926.
In the fall following her graduation, she accepted a position to teach the third and fourth grades in Bath consolidated school, at which post of duty she met with her tragic death, May 18, 1927, lacking just one day of having completed a very successful year of teaching and had already signed a contract to fill the same position another year.
Hazel's one joy when not on duty was to be at home. Her thoughts were like this: It matters little, mother, where I am, or what the tasks my fingers find to do; new friends, new scenes, new thoughts though I may know, my heart turns, always, mother mine, to you.
When she was found in the wreckage, there was a child in each arm. She was taken to Howard City, the home of her parents.
Sunday, May 22, one hundred and fifty cars followed the sad cortege from the home to Amble church and cemetery, where interment was made on the family lot. The most beautiful blossoms of springtime were heaped upon her casket and covered the rooms at her home and at the church, sent by sympathetic friends from all points of the compass.
Reverend Lewis E. Price preached the funeral sermon and paid high tribute to the splendid young woman who had laid down her life clutching the children she loved so well, trying to protect them from harm.
Undertaker Bert E. Meier had charge of
the arrangements. The Amble choir provided the funeral music.
Mrs. Joe Perrone, born in Terra, Italy, October 8, 1894, is the wife of Mr. Joe Perrone who has been section foreman on the Michigan Central railroad at Bath for the past twelve years, except what time he spent in the World War. He was across fourteen months.
Mrs. Perrone was nearly one block away,
standing on the sidewalk with the baby in her arms and another child
by the hands when Kehoe blew his car up in the street. A burr about
two inches square hit her in the eye, tearing the eye out and breaking
the bone over the eye. Something hit her on the top of the head,
tearing a three-cornered deep hole. Sixty-two pieces of bone were
removed and a portion of her brain was taken out. She was in the
hospital twenty-nine days. She is home, but a long ways from well. She
can't do any work that amounts to anything. When she stoops over or
moves quickly, she becomes dizzy and is never without a headache. Her
condition is feared.
Nina Matson was born, December 6, 1907, in Port Blakeley, Washington.
Starting school at St. Ignace, Michigan, she graduated from LaSalle High School, St. Ignace, in June, 1924. She entered college at Michigan State Normal, Ypsilanti, September, 1924, and graduated, receiving a life certificate in June, 1926.
Miss Matson accepted her first position as a Latin and English teacher in Bath and began teaching in August, 1926.
Her right arm and left foot were broken. Four teeth were knocked out and she was cut through the lip to the cheek. She had cuts and bruises on her body, a dislocated ankle, and a lacerated tongue, which took seven stitches.
She was in the hospital six weeks. Miss Matson is now living in St. Ignace.
Miss Matson signed a contract to
come back to Bath and teach this year, 1927 and 1928, but after
making a brave fight, she will not be able to take her position
before January 1, 1928. The board has secured Mrs. Sadie
Richardson Trumble, who has been a teacher at Bath in Clinton
County for many years, to take Miss Matson's place until the
beginning of the year.
Miss Eva Gubbins, twenty-four year old school teacher, had several bad cuts on the head, her foot crushed, and burns on the body.
Eva received some of her schooling in East Lansing and Ypsilanti, getting her life certificate from the Western State Normal at Kalamazoo. Miss Gubbins taught for three years in Ingham county before taking her position in the Bath Consolidated School in 1926.
She has signed a contract to come
back and teach where she came so near losing her life. The parents
and scholars are very proud to see Miss Gubbins come back.
Frank Flory was born near Mt. Pleasant, January 25, 1903.
He graduated from the Mt. Pleasant High School in 1923 and received his life certificate from the Central State Teachers' College in 1924.
Mr. Flory taught manual training in the Bath Consolidated School, 1926. He is coming to teach this year, 1927.
He was in the school at the time of the explosion, but was uninjured.
Floyd C Hugget was born December 22, 1900, in Assyria township, Barry county.
He took the first eight grades in a country school near Bellevue, Michigan. He graduated from Bellevue High School. He then wrote a teacher's examination and taught in a country school for one year. After that he went to the Western State Normal at Kalamazoo, for two years, where he received a life certificate.
Mr. Hugget came from there in 1923 and taught manual training and athletics for one year in the Bath Consolidated School. He was then principal for three years, lacking only two days, when the school was dynamited by Kehoe.
Being in poor health for the last year, he has given up teaching for the years 1927 and 1928. Mr. Hugget is going to try going back to the Western State Normal to get his degree.
During his work in Bath he has made
many friends and I know that everybody will wish him success and
Leona Gutekunst was born January 10, 1905, in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where she went to school and graduated June 13, 1924. She went to Michigan State Normal college and graduated from there in June, 1926. She commenced teaching in Bath in September of the same year.
The children thought a great deal of Miss Gutekunst. Her room was right next to the part that was demolished. She had the children at the time in the back of the room telling them stories. When the story period was over, they asked her to read them another story. Thinking it was about the last day of school, she gave in to them. While she was reading the blast came. Had she not done this, it is likely that herself and about half of her children would have been under the brick wall that tipped over into the front of the room. It tipped over and broke the seats about half way back in the room. My boy was in the room at the time, but he was not hurt. There was one row of seats left ahead of his. It blew out the window lights and the plaster all came down. There wasn't any of the children that I have talked with in this room who heard the explosion and they don't know how they got out.
Leona is still very nervous and is
unable to throw off the scenes of the disaster. She is going back to
college this fall and will try to teach after Christmas.
Miss Evelyn Paul came to Michigan from somewhere in New Hampshire and took a four year course in the Michigan State College, where she graduated from the Home Economics department in 1926, coming to Bath the same fall.
Miss Bernice Stirling graduated from Mt.Pleasant High School in 1924 and also graduated from Mt. Pleasant Normal, getting her life certificate in 1926. She started teaching in Bath in the fall of the same year. I understand Miss Stirling is to teach in St. Louis during 1927.
I am not able to tell much about these
two girls who were teachers in the ill-fated school at the time of
LANSING POET WRITES VERSE ABOUT BLAST
(Woman Says Her Lines Come Through Spiritual Guidance)
Horror and emotional stress, roused by the Bath disaster Wednesday, resulted in the following verse written by Mrs. Owen Abbey, 601 N. Walnut Street. The poem was written through spiritual guidance, according to Mrs. Abbey:
THE SCHOOLHOUSE BLAST
Those tiny hands are now at rest,
Those rosy checks we have caressed,
The moist red lips are now so still,
The babes we loved and alwavs will.
No more we'll scold them for a fault,
For frivolous things that they have bought;
No more will hear that childish voice,
That made our parent hearts rejoice.
We didn't think when they left home,
No more those tiny feet would roam.
We didn't think that last good-bye
Would linger till we met on high.
The loving hearts that now are quiet,
Their mischievous ways that caused a riot,
The way their clear eyes looked at us,
When we would scold and say they must.
The drums, the bats, and all the balls,
Playthings hung on every wall:
The dog that waits them at the gate,
No more will meet him when he's late.
No more we'll kiss him in the morn.
Think of the time when he was born.
How proud our hearts when Doc did say,
Let's see how much the new babe weighs?
Oh God, it seems so hard to let them go,
But still you must want them, we know.
We say, "God's will be done,"
And know they're gone with the setting sun.
Help those dear mothers and fathers now so sad,
When it seems they've lost everything they had.
Cheer them, dear Father, in your own way,
And show them the light to a brighter day.
Help them look up and realize
They've just begun a brighter life.
They'll help us from their own bright sphere,
And cheer us ever year by year.
And when we too will leave this earth,
And have a new world hail our birth,
They'll be waiting there to welcome us,
And say through life, "In God We Trust."
Henry Bergan was born in Livingston county near Howell, Michigan. He was fourteen years old and in the sixth grade. He was a born horticulturist and he had a nice garden every year. It was hard for his father to get him to do other farm work. Henry thought a great deal of his school.
Herman Bergan, eleven years old, was in the fourth grade.
He worked with his brother in the garden, but was more his mother's boy, seeing that she always had wood and water in the house. When she fed the chickens he was always on hand so that she would not have to climb up in the corn crib. He told her that he was younger and could do it easier.
These boys left their broken-hearted
father and mother, and one older brother. They are buried at Okemos,
Arnold Victor Bauerle, born in Dewitt township, February 15, 1919, was in the third grade. Even at that age he had a great head for figures. He asked to be given numbers which often ran into the millions.
His father often told him he would never be a farmer because he ate so slow.
He was always busy at something. If not in school, he was playing baseball.
Arnold wanted to go to Lansing with his parents on the day he was killed, but he had had whooping cough and had been out of school so much that they thought he ought not stay out of school any more. They were in Lansing at the time of the blast at the school.
He is survived by his father and mother,
Mr. and Mrs. Henry Bauerle, one brother and one sister. Interment was
in the Dewitt cemetery.
Floyd Edwin Burnett, aged eleven, was born on the Anna Hall farm, July 11, 1915.
He was in the sixth grade and his standings were always good. He was a great boy for baseball and it was said that he was one of the best players of his age in the school.
Floyd was a good boy to work at home. He already helped with the milking and other chores. Floyd is survived by his father, Mr. George Burnett, five sisters and three brothers.
He is buried in the Bath cemetery beside
his mother, who died several years ago.
Robert Bromund, born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, was twelve years old.
He was in the fifth grade. Robert did not want to go to school. He would rather have quit this spring and worked on the farm.
Amelia Bromund, born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, was eleven years old.
She learned very rapidly and liked to go
to school. She was in the fifth grade. Amelia thought lots of her
teacher, Mrs. Blanche Harte. These children are survived by their father
and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Rudolph Bromund, two brothers and two sisters.
Burial was in Bath.
Russell Chapman was born October 1, 1918, in Delta township, Eaton county, Michigan.
At the time of his death he was in the fourth grade. He liked the Bath school and was a great lover of the farm. He already could harness the horses and he liked to drag for his father.
He was a very mischievous lad and always seemed to have a good time with everbody.
Burial was in the Bath cemetery.
He is survived by his father and mother
Mr. and Mrs. C. C. Chapman, and a younger brother, Earl W., who was in
the school at the time, had his back hurt and one ankle crushed. Earl
was in the hospital a short time. He is now home getting along very
well, but he still walks on the side of his foot.
Cleo Claton, an eight year old in the second grade, lived with his grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Charles Gibbs, near Park lake. His mother died when he was about one year old.
Cleo was not hurt in the school blast, but was killed when Kehoe blew his car up in the street. A large bolt ripped his stomach open and his back and spine were hurt. He was conscious until the very end and lived about seven hours.
Burial was at Dimondale, Michigan.
Thelma Irene McDonald, daughter of Reverend and Mrs. Scott McDonald, was born at Rogers City, August 22, 1919.
She started school at the age of five and was in the third grade. She liked school, and often cried to go when only three years old. Thelma told her father and mother many times that when she grew up she was going to be a teacher.
Besides her father and mother she leaves two younger sisters.
She is buried in Pope cemetery at Springport, Michigan.
Robert Cochran was born in Muskegon, Michigan, December 24, 1918. He was in the third grade. Bobby talked a great deal of being a doctor or a garage man, but his mother thinks he thought more of becoming a singer or a musician.
Being the only child, he leaves his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Frank Cochran, to mourn his death. Mr. Cochran was formerly in the garage business in Bath and after this tragedy, he sold out to his partner, Mr. Claude Porter, who still continues the business. Mr. and Mrs. Cochran have moved to Grand Rapids in order that they might get away from the scene of the terrible disaster.
Robert is buried in the Otisco cemetery,
Ralph Albert Cushman was seven years old. He was in the third grade. Ralph was very good in school except in numbers. He wanted to stay in the second grade last year because one of his friends did not pass.
He loved to play baseball and was at it
morning and night. He played that morning before going to school. The
last thing he said was, "Goodbye mama, I'll be good." He was one of the
last found in the ruins. He leaves to mourn him, his father and mother,
Mr. and Mrs. Albert Cushman, and one sister, Josephine. Interment was in
Mr. S. E. Ewing, Bath township supervisor and local merchant, had a great deal to do with the relief work. He acted as treasurer for the Clinton county board of supervisors that appropriated twenty-five hundred-dollars. This money was spent for relief work and funeral expenses of the victims. Mr. Ewing was appointed local treasurer of the Red Cross and they raised $1,146.05. This money was spent for hospital bills and funeral expenses. He also acted as local supervisor for John W. Haarer, chairman of the general relief fund. Mr. Ewing lost a son, Earl Edwin, in the explosion.
Earl Edwin Ewing, eleven years old, was born in Climax, Michigan, where his father was a storekeeper at the time, later selling out and moving to Ovid, where Earl started school and went for one year. Then his parents moved to Bath where Earl went to school. He was in the sixth grade at the time of his death. He was always a good boy to work.
These pictures were taken on Sunday before he was killed, with a camera he had worked and earned. Earl took his father's picture first and then had his taken. They were still in the camera at the time of his death.
Besides his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. S. E. Ewing, he leaves three brothers and one sister.
He was laid to rest in Perry, Michigan.
Katherine Onalee Foote was born May 29, 1917, planned on going through school and becoming a teacher. If her plans had not been brought to an abrupt end by this terrible disaster, she would likely, have been through school very young, as she was in the sixth grade at the age of ten.
Interment was in Bath.
Margory Fritz was born in the south edge of Clinton county in 1918. She attended the County Line School until 1926 and at that time her people came to Bath and bought a farm so that they could have better school conditions for their children. Margory was in the fourth grade and her teacher, Miss Weatherby, was killed at the same time.
The girl's father, Mr. F. M. Fritz, was helping children out of the wreckage when Kehoe blew his car up in the street. A bolt hit him over the heart, going up to the shoulder, fracturing a shoulder bone, and then turned there and went down his arm part way to his elbow where it was later removed. Although three months have passed, he is unable to work with his left arm.
His two younger children, Norma Jean, two years old, and Charles, five years of age, were sitting in the car. A bolt went through the back window by the two children and imbedded itself in the instrument board of the car.
Margory leaves her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. F. M. Fritz, two brothers and one sister.
Burial was at Mt. Hope cemetery, Lansing, Michigan.
Carlyle Walter Geisenhaver was born December 28, 1917.
He was in the fourth grade. Carlyle was very good in school and his report card always had high marks on it.
His idea was to become a farmer. He dragged for his father and milked one cow and weighed the milk night and morning. Carlyle planned on having a nice garden this summer. He had already purchased his seed. He planned on going fishing this summer if he kept the weeds out of his garden. Carlyle always planned to have his work done first.
He is survived by his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Walter Geisenhaver, one brother, Kenneth, who was slightly bruised on the head, and one brother, Jack, five months old.
He was laid to rest beside his infant twin sisters,
Doris and Dorothy, in the Gunnisonville cemetery.
Beatrice Gibbs was born near Holt in Ingham county, May 17, 1917. She was in the fourth grade.
She lay at the point of death for four days. The fifth day X-ray pictures were taken. Both legs were broken in two places, the right leg was badly lacerated, the left arm was broken above the elbow, and the elbow was fractured. There was also a large gash in the back of her head. Casts could not be used on account of so many lacerations, so a frame was arranged over her bed by the physician as shown in the picture. Ropes and weights were used. At first they used thirty-five pounds of lead. As she improved the weights were lessened until she finally only had five pounds. When she came to after the explosion, she says there was a radiator hanging right over her but when Kehoe blew himself up in the street the radiator disappeared. She was ten feet in the debris.
After three months of intense suffering, Beatrice died in the St Lawrence hospital Monday night, August 22, following an operation for the removal of a splinter from her hip. This makes the forty-fifth victim of the Bath school tragedy.
She is survived by her mother and father, Mr. and Mrs. John F. Gibbs, and a little brother who live near Park lake.
Interment was at Chesaning, Michigan.
Iola Irene Hart, born June 19, 1914, was in the sixth grade. Her plans for the future was to become a nurse or music teacher. She was a fine pianist for a girl of her age. One time while making her childish plans, she said, "Mama, when I get my diploma, I'm going to pick beans." Iola was very affectionate and always kissed her mother good-bye. On her last morning when she kissed her mother she said, "Now, mama, don't worry if I don't come home at noon," and her mother said, "Why do you say that?" She said, "You know I have got to write tests this morning and I might faint away." She then went and picked a bouquet of lilacs and went on to school.
Interment was in the Rose cemetery, East Bath.
Iola is survived by her father and mother, Mr. and
Mrs. Eugene Hart, a sister, Elva, and a brother, Perry.
Willa Marie Hall was born February 19, 1916. She was a very industrious little girl and planned on going through school so as to become a teacher.
George Hall, Jr., was born October 17, 1918. He was very mischievous and never cared much about going to school. He liked excuses so he could stay out and play.
These children are survived by their father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. George Hall, and one younger brother.
They were laid to rest side by side in the Mt. Hope
cemetery at Lansing, Michigan.
Vivian Oletta Hart, born November 2, 1917, was in the third grade.
She liked to sew and made all her doll clothes. Vivian played the piano well but had planned on being a singer, as she said that playing the piano was too hard work.
She is buried in Rose cemetery in East Bath.
She is survived by her father and mother, Mr. and
Mrs. Eugene Hart, a sister, Elva, and a brother, Perry.
Percy Eugene Hart, born February 24, 1916, was in the third grade. He was quite a little farmer and had a garden. Percy always liked to be around the horses. His people lived in Bath and he remarked several times that he was going to go out and work his father's farm.
Interment was in Rose cemetery in East Bath.
Percy is survived by his father and mother, Mr.
and Mrs. Eugene Hart, a sister, Elva, and a brother, Perry.
LaVere Robert Harte, born in Bath township, August 26, 1917, was in the fourth grade.
He liked to do most anything, but drawing was his main pastime. This spring he drew pictures and traded them to other children for marbles and playthings. He planned on drawing funnies or something when he grew up. He was always ready and looking forward to Sunday school.
He left besides his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. LaVere Harte, one little brother, Neal.
Interment was at Bath.
David Harte, Bath township farmer, lives directly across the road to the south from where Kehoe's buildings stood. There was a strong north wind that carried smoke and also burning sparks and shingles over his buildings. David didn't pay any attention to what his own loss might be, but left and went to the school where he did all he could. Other people who came to the fire and didn't know the school had been blown up saved Mr. Harte's buildings. This picture of Mr. Harte and his little grandson, LaVere Robert, was taken about eight years ago. Mr. Harte hasn't been seen this summer with this happy smile, as LaVere was killed at the age of ten in the school disaster.
Gailand Lyle Harte, age twelve, was in the sixth grade.
He was very interested in farming and helped his father much by running the tractor and by helping milk the cows. He liked sheep and enjoyed looking after the little lambs. He liked to do things that called for the use of horses. Gailand was mechanically inclined and drove the car when his people were with him.
Burial was in the Bath cemetery.
Besides his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Octa
Harte, he is survived by one brother, Gareth, who was in the school but jumped out
of the window and ran home, a distance of about two miles, and one sister, about a
year and a half old.
Stanley Horace Harte, age twelve years, was in the sixth grade. He was quiet and kept his own counsel. He was small for his age but could keep his end up in games and sports with children much larger than he.
He leaves besides his mother, Mrs. Maude Harte,
three brothers and four sisters. He is buried in Bath beside his father, Horace
Harte, who died when Stanley, was about five.
Francis Otto Hoppener, thirteen years of age, was born in Okemos, Ingham county. He was in the sixth grade.
He was a great boy for machinery and seemed like a natural born mechanic. He could fix nearly any of the tools that went wrong on the farm.
Besides his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Otto Hoppener, he leaves a brother and a sister at home.
Interment was at Okemos, Michigan.
Cecial Lorn Hunter was born in Dolphen, Manitoba, Canada, December 16, 1913. He was in the sixth grade.
Cecial was a great hand for horses and had planned to work out this summer so he would have money to buy lots of good clothes for this winter.
He is survived by his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. George Hunter, two sisters and one brother.
Interment was at Laingsburg, Michigan.
Doris Elaine Johns was born in Bath, October 17, 1919.
She was in the third grade. Doris liked school and always got good marks. She was a very quiet, well-liked, little girl. Doris was planning to take lessons on the violin at the time of her death.
Her people live about one block from the schoolhouse and when her mother got there she found Doris hanging up by the legs and had a man get her down. She must have been killed instantly.
Burial was at Bath. Besides her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Ira Johns, she leaves two small brothers, a sister, Pauline, and another who is younger.
Her sister, Pauline Margaret Johns, was eleven years old and in the fifth grade.
Pauline had her right arm broken in two places and had to have a silver plate put in the right shoulder which will have to be removed in a year. The left arm was cut just above the elbow. Muscles were cut off that controlled the hand in her right wrist and she will have to be taken to Ann Arbor to be examined right away. There are not much hopes in her ever using that hand or wrist again, as the hand is apparently dead. She was bruised and scraped all over.
She was in the hospital eight weeks and when
she first got home thought she would not want to go back to school again,
but when she found they were going to have a new school with a gymnasium,
she became anxious for school to start.
Ida Delau is twelve years old. She was in the sixth grade.
She had her back broken, three vertebrae crushed, a large cut on her chin, and her legs bruised. For six weeks she was strapped on a frame and now every day she is straightened up a little more to strengthen her back.
She is looking ahead now very anxiously until the time when she can come home. She had one brother and one sister in the school at the time.
Emma, a sixteen year old in the ninth grade, was taken through the window and with the assistance of a ladder she was helped down by the superintendent, Mr. Huyck, who was later killed in the street by Kehoe.
Arthur, age eight, was in the second grade. He escaped with a crushed foot.
These are the children of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Delau, farmers of South Bath.
Ida's picture is shown on the previous page
in a hospital room with Pauline Johns.
J. Emerson Medcoff was born, December 30, 1917, in Lansing, Michigan. His people moved to Bath about 1920.
He was in the fourth grade and was one of the youngest in his grade. Being very active in school he was advanced from kindergarten to the second grade.
He was fond of baseball and all outdoor sports. He spent much time trying to make something that he could get music from. He planned on being a musician or architect.
J. Emerson is buried in the Bath Cemetery.
Besides his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. James Medcoff, he leaves one brother and one sister, Thelma Irene.
Thelma was born September 9, 1911, and she was in the tenth grade.
She was hurt in the explosion in the street at the time Kehoe bew his car up. Thelma was cut in three places on the legs, and the bone was bruised on one knee. She was in bed for ten days. The car was about forty or fifty feet from her when it blew up.
She was very frightened at the time but says
that she is ready to go back to school and is not afraid.
Clarence Wendell McFarren, born in Bath township December 15, 1913, was in the sixth grade.
He was a natural born mechanic and loved nature. He had to stay home from school a short tune before his death with a bad cold. While he had to stay in the house, he built what he called his tractor out of some spools and old clock springs. He had it arranged so that it would run on the floor.
Clarence is buried in the family lot at Laingsburg, Michigan.
Besides his father and mother, Mr. and
Mrs. Wendell McFarren, he is survived by a brother, Arthur, who was
in the school at the time but escaped by being only badly shaken up, and
one sister, Cassie, age seventeen. She graduated this year, but was not
in the school at the time of the disaster.
Emma Amelia Nickols, age thirteen, was in the sixth grade, Emma was killed.
Her sister, Ottelia, was eleven years old.
Ottelia had her face badly cut and burned and her thumb nearly cut off.
Another sister, Ruth, was eight years old.
Ruth had a badly fractured hip and she is just commencing to get around on it at this time.
Emma leaves besides her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Henry Nickols, these two injured sisters, another sister, and two brothers.
Interment was at Bath.
Elsie Mildred Robb was born in Kinmundy, Illinois, Decemnber 20, 1914.
She was in the sixth grade. Elsie always planned on going to college to prepare herself for a teacher. She had often spoken how she liked the Bath school and her teacher, Mrs. Harte. She attended Sunday School in Dewitt.
Elsie is survived by her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Robb, four sisters and one brother.
She is buried in the Dewitt cemetery.
Richard Dibble Richardson was born October 11, 1914, in Dewitt township, where his people still live, but they are in the Bath school district. He was in the sixth grade.
Richard was a great boy for machinery and knew how to put tools together on the farm. He could run the tractor. His father had given him an acre of ground to put into beans this year.
A year ago he took all of his money out of the bank which amounted to about thirty-two dollars, and bought a Holstein calf from his father. He just completed arrangements for selling the heifer back to his father for one hundred dollars. He was very conservative and was planning how he would invest his money.
A girl in his room said that a radiator fell
on him. His skull was crushed and he was killed instantly. He is survived by
his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Guy Richardson, and two sisters, Virginia
and Martha. Interment was in Bath cemetery.
Virginia Blanche Richardson was eleven years old and in the fifth grade. She was in the school at the time and fell from the second floor. When asked about the tragedy, she says everything went into the air and she put her arms over her face. She looked for the door and not being able to find it, saw a light and went out through the wall which had been blown away.
Before the explosion she met her brother on the stairs as she was going up and they smiled at each other. That was the last time she saw him alive.
The other sister, Martha Harriette, a nine year old, was in the fourth grade. She thought she fell out of her seat. Martha tried to call to her teacher, Miss Weatherby, who was killed, but found she could not speak, finally, her speech came to her and she called to her daddy.
Three stitches were taken in her chin. Her instep
on one foot was cut to the heel, the other leg was bruised and raked.
Pauline Mae Shirts was born in Midland county, May 19, 1916, where her father ran a filling station until March 10, 1927, when he moved on his farm in Bath township.
Pauline was a very friendly child and made friends with most everyone. Her ambition was to become a teacher. She was always playing school at home.
Burial was in the Bath cemetery.
Elizabeth Jane Witchell, age ten, was born on the Enos Peacock farm east of Bath. She was in the fifth grade.
Her parents are Mr. and Mrs. Roscoe Witchell now of Lansing.
She is buried in the Rose cemetery in Bath township.
Lucile June Witchell, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Roy Witchell, was born in Ingham county, just south of the Mt. Hope cemetery, Lansing. She was nine years of age and in the fourth grade.
She was very brilliant in school and had no trouble in making her grades. She got A's on every report card. She learned music easily but never took to it. Lucile liked to go to school.
She is buried in the Rose cemetery in Bath township.
Harold LeMoyne Woodman, born in East Lansing, July 3, 1918, was in the third grade. He was mechanically inclined.
His father was a mechanic at the state garage at Lansing. Mr. Woodman promised Harold that next year he would buy him an old car and let him take it apart and then he would show him how to put it back together again.
He leaves his father and mother, Mr. and Mrs. Harold Woodman, one brother, Wallace and one sister, about age three.
Burial was in the Bath cemetery.
Lloyd Zimmerman, age twelve years, was in the fifth grade and George Orval, ten years of age, was in the third grade.
These children were both born in Muskegon, Michigan. Their folks moved to Bath about a year ago.
Lloyd's desire was to become a floriculturist. He spent much time practicing on his violin.
Vida Marie Zimmerman, who is shown in the picture, was a scholar of the Bath school, but was at home sick the day of the explosion.
Lloyd and Orval are buried at Mt. Rest cemetery at
St. Johns, Michigan.
Vera Elizabeth Babcock, born March 13, 1914, was in the sixth grade at the time of the explosion.
Three stitches had to be taken in her knee, and both of her ankles were sprained. She had minor bruises on her head and a bad cut on her left arm.
Norris Babcock was born April 18, 1916. He was in the sixth grade.
He was cut on the head, hit on the back with something, and scratched on the face and arms.
These are the children of Mrs. Minnie Babcock.
Lloyd Babcock, a twelve year old, had one finger blown off, three teeth knocked out, lips cut and his nose broken.
While under the ruins of the school, he called to Earl Proctor, who was a short distance away and said, "Never mind, I am with you."
He is having a lot of fun now wiggling his stub finger.
He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Duwaine Babcock.
Ruth M. Barnes, born July 9, 1909, was cut on the head, on the left knee, on the elbow, in two places on the left thigh, and hurt on her back. A piece was taken out of her right knee. Both ankles were hurt. She was under about five feet of the wreckage. When the explosion came, she was in the hall between the superintendent's office and the library, the section that was blown down.
Miss Barnes is a very popular student and was editor-in-chief of the Bath school paper and one of the honor roll scholars of the school. She had never been compelled to take any semester examinations because of her high marks. She was vice-president of the girl's club and had been toastmistress at the high school annual banquet.
She was in the hospital twenty-four days and it bothers her some to walk yet, but she is anxious to go back to school and finish her senior year.
She lives with her father and mother, Mr. and Mrs.
Archie Barnes in the southeast corner of Bath township near Shaftsburg.
Marcia Detluff was born in Bath, Michigan, June 13, 1914. She was in the ninth grade.
Besides being badly shaken up she received several very bad cuts about the ankles from flying glass.
Marcia is now well and ready to start back to school.
Her father, Albert Detluff, has been the village
blacksmith for many years and a member of the school board. Mr. Detluff has closed
up his shop owing to poor health. He has also resigned from the school board as he
expects to work in Lansing.
Adabelle Dolton was born August 27, 1916. She was in the fifth grade.
She had one ear nearly cut off and a large cut over the ear and many cuts and bruises on her legs and feet. When found, both shoes and one stocking were off and her other stocking was in threads.
She says that she is not afraid to go back to school.
She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Harry Dolton, Bath
Anna Braska, a ten year old, in the fourth grade, had her jaw broken, one arm broken and one leg broken. She was bruised all over.
Anna has been in the hospital three months at this date, but expects to leave soon.
She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Braska,
Bath township farmers.
Raymond Echstruth, nine years old, was in the fourth grade.
He had his ankle and foot broken and his arm hurt; his hair, face, eyebrows and lashes were burned. Raymond was in the hospital ten days.
Iva Echstruth, a thirteen year old, was in the sixth grade.
She was in the hospital two weeks with a fractured leg, a sprained elbow, and cuts on her chin and eye. She was unconscious until Kehoe blew himself up in the street.
Marian Echstruth was eleven years old and in the fifth grade.
She was shocked more than hurt. Her hair was burned. Marian was thrown against a radiator and something was thrown against her chest, but she was not hurt badly. She was in the hospital four days.
These children are the daughters and the son of Mr.
and Mrs. Francis Echstruth, Bath township farmer.
Josephine England was eleven years old and in the third grade. This child's parents have been parted for some time. At the time of the disaster, she was making her home with relatives in Bath and going to school.
Besides her receiving minor bruises, her right leg had to be amputated below the knee. She was the only child in the school to entirely lose a limb.
Josephine is now well and has a good home with her
great aunt near Detroit.
Aletha Fredrick, eight years old, is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Fredrick.
She had a very bad cut on her head.
When the explosion came, she says the teacher said, "Run girls." They ran around the room, trying to find their way out. They finally, saw a light and crawled through where it was a little lighter and then somebody helped them out of the ruins.
Aletha is now well and says she is ready to
start back to school.
James Foster, thirty-one years old, was hurt while working in the wreckage. Mr. Foster was taking a child out when some of the roof fell and struck him on the back and legs.
Mr. Foster was laid up for about six weeks,
and has not been able to do any heavy work since.
Perry George Hart was seventeen years old and had quit school. He was down town on an errand for his mother at the time of the explosion. Perry was among the first there and was helping rescue the children. When he went out toward the walk, Kehoe blew his car up and a piece of iron about two inches in diameter and three-eights of an inch thick struck him on his heel, going up through to the ankle joint. He nearly bled to death and it was not until the next day they got the piece of iron and fragments of sock and leather out of his wound.
Perry is still in the Sparrow hospital at Lansing, Michigan, where he will have to remain indefinitely. The doctors and nurses have watched continually to try and save his foot but at this time, nearly four months after the explosion, there is nothing certain about it. The last operation they had to remove new bone because infection had set in from the old bone. Perry, being a big, strong, healthy boy, has helped a good deal in combating the poison that might have caused gangrene.
Since his last operation, which was about August 20, he has not been in any pain as long as he stays in bed, but when he gets up it seems to swell around the drain tubes and he has to get back into bed and have it dressed, so there must be infection in it yet.
Perry has made many friends while he has been in the hospital because he is always good-natured and does not complain.
Perry is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Hart.
Dorothy Fulton, eleven years old, was in the sixth grade. She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Fulton of Bath township.
She was cut on the head and wrist, a tendon was cut
in the wrist, and her legs were scratched and bruised. Dorothy was in the hospital
three weeks, but she is now at home and ready for school.
Ralph R. Hobert, born May 7, 1917, was in the third grade.
His leg was broken, back and face were cut, arms were bruised, and he had a black eye. Ralph was in the hospital nineteen days. He is now well and says he is not afraid to go back to school.
Helen E. Hobert, born May 6, 1914, was in the sixth grade. She had a black eye, her legs and arms were dug up. Owing to the excitement of the rescuers when they took her out of the wreckage, she was dragged over a timber that had nails sticking out of it and she was considerably cut and torn.
They are the children of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Hobert now of Byron. Both children say that if their people do not move back to Bath, they will come back and stay with their grandparents so they can go to school in Bath.
P. S. That's the spirit.
Carlton E. Hollister was born December 5, 1915, in Rochester, Michigan.
He was bruised over the left eye and cut on the head in three places. He was unconscious when taken out but he is well and says he is ready to go back to school when it starts.
Carlton is the son of Mr. and Mrs. C.
E. Hollister, Bath township farmer.
Donald J. Huffman, born July 10, 1917, at Longley, Ohio, was in the fourth grade.
Both legs were broken and one leg had a compound fracture. His arm was broken at the wrist. About half of his right cheek bone was cracked and had to be taken off. His whole cheek from above his ear was torn loose and just hanging on one side so his teeth and eyeball could be seen. His eye was lacerated badly, but now it is healed so you can only see a portion of his eye in the corner next to his nose, then there is a cataract growing over that. He is blind in that eye. Donald was cut in many other places, mostly on the back. He was unconscious for ten days and there were no hopes for him for over two weeks. The doctors say that he was the most cut and bruised of any child in the school, dead or alive.
Donald gets nearly hysterical when it
storms. He says he does not want to go back to school again for fear
someone will dynamite him. He is in the hospital at this date, August
10, 1927, but expects to be home soon. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs.
Daniel B. Huffman.
June Rose Huffman, born June 14, 1915, at Longley, Ohio, was in the sixth grade.
A piece of glass or something cut a letter M in her head. Three teeth were knocked out. She had bad cuts on her lips, in her mouth and also under her arm. Many pieces of glass were taken out of her back and behind her ear. She was semi-unconscious for about three days and was in the hospital ten days.
She is now home and feeling fine and says that she is ready to go to school again.
June is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Daniel
B. Huffman, Michigan Central ticket agent at Bath.
Elva Hart, born July 31, 1912, had been talking to Mr. McFarren, the old gentleman who was killed at Kehoe's car, and for some unknown reason she turned and ran towards home and got forty or fifty feet away when the explosion came. Elva was not hurt.
Elva is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
Lester King, an eight year old, in the second grade, had his head cut. He got out some way and got his little bicycle and rode for home as fast as he could. After he got about one-half mile away the chain broke, so he ran the bicycle in the ditch and ran the rest of the way home.
His mother was just waking up his father, who works nights, to tell him what happened and hearing a noise, she turned around and saw Lester in the doorway all covered with plaster. His mother first thought he was a ghost.
Lester says he is not very anxious for school to start, but when it does he will be ready to go.
He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. George King,
formerly of Haslett.
Helen Komm, shown in the picture, was thirteen years of age and in the fifth grade. She received terrible cuts on the head and neck and minor bruises and cuts on the arms. For twelve days she lay in the semiconscious state. Since that time she has gradually grown back to health until now, the middle of August, Helen is looking forward to start school.
Helen's little sister, Florence, age nine,
was also in the school and received a deep gash in the leg and many
bruises about the body. After spending five days in the hospital, Florence
was brought home where she rapidly improved and now is ready to start
school. These are two of the children of Mr. and Mrs. Fred Komm, Bath
Florence Edith Hunter, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. George Hunter of East Bath, was born in Lansing, 1917.
She had both hip caps crushed. Four bones in one foot, one finger, and her pelvis bone were broken.
Although three months have passed, her foot still bothers her.
Florence says she is ready to start school.
Willis, Billy, McCoy was ten years old and in the fifth grade.
He had his right leg broken above the knee
and was scratched and bruised in many places. When he was found in the
wreckage by his father, F. M. McCoy, he was buried in the wreckage with
his head on the outside of the wall and the rest of him on the inside.
Billy was in the hospital six weeks and two days, but is hobbling around
in pretty good shape at this time. He says he is not very anxious to go
back to school.
Pauline Mae McCoy was twelve years old and in the sixth grade. Both of her ears were nearly torn off. She had a long gash in the back of her head and on her forehead, several cuts on her legs and she was black and blue practically all over. Pauline was semi-conscious for three days afterwards.
Hattie Reutter was in the second grade. She came to Bath with her grandparents, Mr. and Mrs. Jim Hall, when they moved here about a month before the school disaster. She was in the school at the time it blew up but was not hurt except being badly shaken up.
These two little girls are shown in the picture
with Mrs. Thomas Henneberry, 106 South May street, Joliet, Illinois, by the
ruined school. Mrs. Henneberry stopped here with her husband while they were
on their honeymoon trip through Michigan and Ohio.
Lee Henry Mast, ten years old, was in the fifth grade.
He was bumped on the head and back, hurt on the chin and jaws so he could not get his mouth shut for a few days, and his lips were cut.
If the teacher had not sent him upstairs a few minutes before the explosion he would likely have been killed.
Lee is the only child of Mr. and Mrs. Jake Mast.
Earl Fred Proctor, born July 14, 1914, was in the sixth grade.
He has been in the hospital nine weeks and will be there for some time yet. Both legs were broken in two places. A silver plate was put in the left leg. The right leg was broken between the knee and thigh. He had three bad cuts in the head and was stabbed in the back with something just above the hips. The seat of his trousers was completely torn away.
He has still got grit and looking forward to the time when he can come home to go fishing
His mother, formerly Miss Ethel Viges, has been with
him almost constantly. Earl's brother, Ralph Edmund, was five years old and in the
first grade. He got a bad tear in the right arm when Kehoe blew himself and car up
in front of the school.
Lee Reasoner, born February 10, 1915, was in the sixth grade.
He had one ankle sprained and the other fractured. His legs were cut and bruised, and he had a deep cut on his chin and forehead which looked as if they had been peeled.
His father, Roy L. Reasoner, was one of the bus drivers at the time. Mr. Reasoner is now a member of the school board.
Lee says he is ready to try school again.
Lillian M. Reed, born in Oakley, Michigan, December 27, 1913, was in the sixth grade.
She was hit by something which knocked out four teeth and cut out a portion of her gums and a gash was cut from the corner of her mouth an inch and a half in her cheek. She was cut from her lips to her chin, cut on the skull and over the right eye, cut on the body and she also had many minor cuts and bruises. Many pieces of slate and gravel were taken out of the cuts and her left ankle was fractured.
Lillian says she is ready to go back to school, but she wants to get her teeth before starting.
She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Benjamin
Reed, Bath township farmer.
Oral Riker, born at Weidman, Michigan, May 14, 1915, was in the fourth grade at the time of the explosion.
He had three bad scalp wounds and a concussion of the brain. His back was bruised and his ankles were sprained. There was for a time that when he would look at one object he would see two. His vision is cleared up now.
Oral is feeling fine at this time and says he will be ready to go back when school starts again.
The lad makes his home with his brother and
sister-in-law, Mr. and Mrs. Earl Riker, Bath township farmer.
Jack Rounds was born in Bath township, October 18, 1916. He was in the fifth grade. His teacher was Mrs. Harte, whom he liked very well. He had exchanged rooms and gone up stairs to write tests that day. Jack fell through the top floor to the ground and the top floor came down and he was found beneath it.
He had a bad cut on his head and eye, one arm broken, cheek bone fractured, and several bruises.
He liked the Bath School and he says that he is already to go back.
Jack is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Eugene Rounds.
His father served as a member of the school board for three years commencing
1921. His mother had one of the school bus routes during l922.
Harold McKenzie was born August 25, 1916.
He was cut on the head and there were holes in his head that looked like nail holes. He was bruised and scraped on the shoulder and legs. He was never afraid before to go upstairs or any place at night alone, but he is now very afraid of the dark.
Harold says he is not afraid to go back to school.
He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Wm. McKenzie, Bath
Ivan Freemont Seeley, age twelve, was born in Bath, Michigan. He was in the fifth grade.
He was nearly scalped, starting from the back of his head, and had two deep scalp wounds and many scratches and bruises. He got out of the schoolhouse unassisted and started for home. He met his mother on the street and did not see her until the boy who was with him called his attention to her. This lad was in the hospital two weeks and after he was taken home, he was taken to the doctor's each day for three weeks until he was out of danger.
Ivan now says that he is ready to go back to school.
He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. J. Seeley, Bath railroad section hand.
Gail Edmund Stebleton was born in Lansing, 1916. He was in the fourth grade.
He had a broken jaw, double compound fractured ankle, a scraped head and face and shoulder cut. He lost three teeth. This lad was in the hospital for six weeks.
Gail is a great boy for fishing and baseball. When the writer was talking to him, Gail asked him if he would come and take him fishing some day soon. He thought they would have better luck if they went together.
He had three brothers and one sister in the school at
the time of the explosion but he was the only one hurt. Gail says he is ready to
start back to school any time they make him.
Lester Stowells, an eight year old, formerly of Lansing, had both legs broken, one was badly splintered and a silver plate was riveted to the bone. Later when the bones get knitted together, he will have to go back to the hospital and have the plate removed. His tongue was nearly cut off and two finger nails on the left hand were blown off. He was in the hospital six weeks. He is getting around at present by the aid of crutches and he expects to go back to school when it starts.
At the hospital the nurses called him their good boy because he was so patient. At the time of the school explosion, he thought the world was coming to an end, but it was not that that worried him. He thought he would never see his father and mother again.
Lester has been making his home with Mr. and Mrs.
Will Fredrick, east of Bath. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Donald Stowells of
Kenneth Witchell is the ten year old son of Mr. and Mrs. Leon Witchell. He was in the fifth grade.
He escaped with a gash in the right leg and the left leg bruised. He was bruised black and blue about the body.
Although he was badly shaken up, he says that he
is ready to start school.
Cecelia Zavistoski born in Chicago, Illinois. She was fourteen and in the sixth grade.
Cecelia had one ear nearly cut off, a large gash back of her ear, and she was bruised black and blue nearly all over.
In spite of all this, she is wide awake and anxious to get back to school again.
She is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Adam Zavistoski.
Steve Stivaviske was born in Chicago, Illinois, May 15, 1918. He was in the sixth grade.
Steve had both legs broken when Kehoe's car
exploded in the street. A bolt passed through his arm above the elbow and
just hung in the skin. He was in the hospital seven weeks, but he is out and
getting around fine at this time. Steve has much courage and says he is
ready to start back to school. He is the son of Mr. and Mrs. Tony
Ava Thelma Sweet, age thirteen and in the sixth grade, was badly cut and bruised. Her arm was at first paralyzed, but finally got so she could use it. Her face was cut very badly and her head was bruised and cut. There was a board across her head when she was found, which the men had to saw at each side before she could be removed from the wreckage.
She was buried under the ruins with another girl classmate. They had been taught in school that if they were ever in an accident and fast not to scream and make a fuss, so they laid there and cautioned each other about it. They could hear the working men talking over them and finally heard the men say, "I guess we have got them all out of here, let's go some place else." Then the girls screamed and the men kept on digging until they got where they were and saved them both.
Her brother, Dean Norman Sweet, was eleven years old. He was in the sixth grade, but he was in the fifth grade room writing a test.
He had a scalp wound, his left leg broken, and he was black and blue nearly all over. He was one of the last ones taken out of the ruins alive. The men had to pull him out and get away quick as the wall had commenced to crumble all around them. The children both say that they are willing and ready to go back to school.
They are the son and daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
Willard S. Sweet, Bath township farmer and milkman.
Norman Sage, born in Ionia county, May 26, 1916, was in the fourth grade.
His scalp and lips were cut, right ankle bone bruised, and he was cut on the forehead. Seven teeth were knocked out. He was in the hospital one week and two days.
Norman lives with his people at Park Lake,
goes swimming every day and says he is ready to go back to school.
Ardis Wilson was eleven years old and in the sixth grade.
She was cut on the back of her head, over one eye and also on her cheek and arm. Her ankles were sprained and her body was bruised. She says she was blown to the ceiling and came down square on her feet. She was writing a test when the blast came.
Ardis is the daughter of Mr. and Mrs.
William Wilson, a farmer of Bath township.
Chapter Eight: Schoolhouse Plan Donated
FOLLOWING only a brief breathing spell during which the stricken community was recovering from its death dealing shock, the Bath Board of Education, in contemplation of its forced building problem, secured the counsel and advice of Mr. Holmes, school architect of the Warren-Holmes-Powers Company. Senator James Couzens of Detroit had wired Governor Green that his financial assistance might be called upon to the extent of replacing the wrecked school, with the avowed purpose of not only securing for Bath the replacement of their ordinary building but a modern school plant. Mr. Holmes at once gave the situation his personal attention.
Co-operating with the Governor and Senator Couzens, the architects developed a plan that provides for the survivors of the Bath disaster, both young and old --- a community school building. The undestroyed portion of the school is strengthened and rearranged. The main feature of the new part is a fine community room and gymnasium fitted with a stage, and boys and girls shower and locker rooms. Spacious rooms are provided for manual arts, home economics, and agriculture. Necessary classrooms for grade and high school accommodates two hundred fifty children and ten teachers.
The building is planned particularly to correlate the every day problem of the rural community with book learning. The agricultural department fitted with a growing room is also the room in which physics, chemistry and botany are taught. The clothing room is used for English teaching, and the manual arts room holds classes in drawing, algebra and geometry. The community room seats the parents as well as the boys and girls at the lecture course, school entertainments and commencement exercises or inter-school basket ball contests. Community banquets were anticipated in placing the foods laboratory adjacent to the gymnasium.
When completed, it will represent one of the most up-to-date consolidated rural schools of the state.
School under handicapped conditions
started September 5, 1927. School is held in the community hall,
township hall, and two store buildings. Although somewhat handicapped,
it is moving along smoothly under the supervision of Superintendent O.
M. Brant, an educator with considerable experience and formerly of
Luther, Michigan. It will not be long until this burden will be improved
as United States senator, James Couzens, of Detroit and the Bath school
board have accepted the plans donated to Bath school district by Warren
Holmes, Lansing architect. The people of this community feel very
grateful for leaving the burden of replacing the wrecked school taken
from their minds on Wednesday, September 14, 1927, when the contract was
let for the new building. On Thursday, September 15, Enos Peacock,
treasurer of the school board, was notified by John W. Haarer,
vice-president of the City National Bank of Lansing and chairman of the
general relief fund appointed by Governor Fred W. Green, that he was in
possession of a check drawn to the Bath school district by United States
senator, James Couzens, for seventy-five thousand dollars. I don't
know words large enough to express the gratitude of this Community to
the Hon. Mr. James Couzens.
Chapter Nine: The Morning Of The Blast
(this was written by Martha Hintz who was fifteen and in the ninth grade)
THE school buses brought us to school at the usual time but not half as many pupils were there because they were exempt from their final examinations.
The day could not have been more beautiful with its spring freshness and a glorious sunshine which at once encouraged us to master our work, rejoicing and struggling with thoughts of despair.
Peals of childish laughter rang out as the little children ran outdoors with their playmates to romp and roam on and about the school yard before the bell of order rang. Little did their young minds, as the rest of ours, fancy their destiny was at hand. Ah, could they realize that perhaps in a half an hour they would rest in eternity with their playmates hearing the sweet songs of angels as they met them at the gates of Heaven.
The bell rang; boys and girls assembled and began their work more eagerly than ever to obtain the highest mark possible.
In the assembly room which I was in, our superintendent, Mr. Huyck, and Mr. Flory, manual training teacher, were giving examinations to one of their classes when at a quarter of ten a loud crash was heard, shaking the assembly and threatening it with the falling of plaster and lights overhead and raising us, a terror stricken group of pupils, out of our seats with violence. We began to run screaming and crying in the same breath, some running for the door while others made for the windows. Mr. Huyck called us together and ordered several of the older boys after a ladder, who were already on the roof with Mr. Flory and leaped a distance of fourteen feet to the ground. I was thankful that I saw my brother and knew he was safe.
We could see through the door of the assembly room where the blast had done its fatal work most. Yet, we could not imagine how this could have occurred.
Ladders had been secured and we were helped out of the windows by some bystanders and boys nearby. Mr. Huyck stayed until he saw everyone of us out safe.
From every direction we could see people coming, some running at their utmost speed, and others driving machines, both hoping and praying that their children or friends were not among the dead.
Men who had already gathered were clearing away the wreckage and pulling out one child after another. This was the most horrible spectacle one could ever witness, truly on the face of the earth, one could not have seen anything more piteous, or shameful than the scene which lay before our eyes.
One of our teachers who had been fortunate enough to escape from her classroom was with several other girls and I at the time of the second explosion. We were going toward the front of the building when it occurred and, thinking it was the school again, we ran from the place as fast as we possibly could. We knew not what had caused this, but bewildered yet from the first explosion and caring not only to get out in the open country where peace reigned, out and away from those heart-breaking scenes which burdened our minds. As we arrived at the oil station we saw a great fire toward the west, "What could it be?" we asked of one another and "Hark!" "What was that tinkling noise which became more distinct every moment?" "It's the relief from Lansing, I'll bet," said one of our group. Truly, we rejoiced for a moment as we saw a line of cars and ambulances coming at full speed toward Bath.
We were picked up by a few of our friends and taken to a home nearby only to learn that the mother had lost her little daughter. We tried to comfort her but our efforts were all in vain, she only wept more bitterly with sorrow and moaned for her lost one.
Not until we were taken back to Bath did we hear what caused the disaster nor the death of Mr. Huyck and Miss Weatherby. It seemed unbelievable but was not the whole thing like a hideous dream?
Cars came, more and more, ambulances were loading and carrying away the injured, and lying covered up in a row upon the school yard lay they who moved no more.
As we gazed at the mournful picture, my brother came and said he was going home. I bid my friends good-bye who stood nearby and turned to my teacher and gave her a word of farewell and thus we parted.
As we made our way homeward the well-known passage came and lo, how true it was, "He will never forsake thee."