Saturday, October 19, 2013

Sentimental Sunday: Three Cartersville People Die in Collision 1950

My grandfather, Robert Stanley's older brother Woodrow was married to Bernice Willis. Bernice had been married previously to a John Scott. Bernice and John had one daughter, Inez.
Woodrow and Bernice

There are a lot of people in this picture. Back to Front Left to Right: Willena, Henry, Vesta, Bernice, Glen, Ralph, Larkin, Robert, Ed Harris, Jr., Woodrow, Clarence, Inez. 

When I first saw this picture, and saw that Inez was labeled here. I didn't know who she was. The only Inez I knew of was the little girl who burned from fire. I just came across an email from someone who found me on This lady, Joyce, sent me an email telling me that Bernice's first husband was John Scott, and that she had a daughter Inez. That is when I remembered I had a picture of an Inez, and here it is. 

Joyce also sent me part of a copy of an article from the Weekly Tribune-News Cartersville, GA from January 12 1950. The article is titled Three Cartersville People Die in Collision. 

According to the article, on January 8th 1950 at 12:45 in the morning, Woodrow, Bernice, Bernice's mother and brother were riding in a 1936 Oldsmobile and were hit head on with a dump truck driven by a young 20 year old guy named Jack D. Rhoden.  Bernice's mother, Mrs. Lee Alton Willis Sr. (Etta) and Jack D Rhoden died at the scene of the accident on Canton Road. Bernice's brother, Bradley died about 4 hours later at the Howell-Quillian Clinic. Woodrow suffered a bad laceration on his head, mouth and lip and had bruises and abrasions. Both of Bernice's legs were broken in the accident. One in several places, and she also suffered severe lacerations, bruises and abrasions. 

Picture of the Car Wreck

Part of the article is missing. But it looks like Jack D Rhoden had a bad driving record. Mr. Rhoden's passenger, Fred Tolbert of Dahlonega said that Rhoden was driving the dump truck as fast as it would run and with no lights. Then the article is cut off. But another part on the side says that someone reported the dump truck as almost wrecking them on Christmas Eve. The article ends with "Mrs. Cantrell was returning to her home....when suddenly appeared from the south, and crashed into the rear of the Cantrell machine. Rhoden pleaded with Mrs. Can-  that is the end of the article.

It seems, Mr. Rhoden may have pleaded for Mrs. Cantrel to not call the police. But, if she had done so, and Rhoden had been sited, or had his license revoked, that maybe Bernice's mother and brother wouldn't have been killed.  I have emailed the newspaper, to see if they had a way to find the article for me, so I can get the missing information. I will update the article if they respond. 

Please leave a comment or email me if you have more information for this story. I also would like to know if Woodrow and Bernice ever had children. I would like to know where they are buried too. I have a date of death for Woodrow as January 28 1989, but I'm not sure where I got that information from.

Etta Willis memorial page is #36297967 
Jasper Bradley Willis's memorial page is #36297973 
I believe that Inez's memorial page is #36291216 
I haven't found Woodrow or Bernice's memorial page yet, if they have one that is. 

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