Obit: Ramker, Melvin (1916 - 1946)
Surnames: Ramker, Wagner, Dollhausen, Yaeger, Beschta, Gierl, Apfelbeck, Firnstahl, Gries, Kraus, Andrew, Reis, Schjonneman, Schommer, Obernberger, Brill, Feckhelm, Hackel, Prange, Becherer, Koerner
----Source: Colby Phonograph (Colby, Clark County, Wis.) 02/28/1946
Ramker, Melvin (29 Feb. 1916 - 21 Feb. 1946)
John Ramker, age 57, and his son, Melvin Ramker, age 29, of the town of Hull, Marathon county, were killed in the cab of their truck at the Riplinger grade crossing, about seven miles southwest of Unity, last Thursday afternoon at about 12:55 o’clock when the south bound Soo Line passenger train from Minneapolis hit the truck and dragged it half a mile down the track.
Mr. Ramker and son were hauling a load of hay from the Riplinger area, which they had purchased at an auction, to the Ramker farm, and evidently did not see the train until the front of their truck was on the track. The cab was badly smashed and the two men remained pinned in the cab while the truck was dragged by the train.
According to Arthur Wagner of Neillsville, deputy Clark county coroner, the father’s chest was punctured and his son suffered chest injuries, a gash in the neck and his left foot was amputated. He said that indications were that various bones in their bodies were probably broken.
Engineer Dollhausen, a Fond du Lac trainman, said that he had sounded the whistle at the crossing. William Yaeger of Stevens Point was the conductor of the train which was south bound from Minneapolis to Chicago.
The view is clear for half a mile on each side of the crossing. The cab of the truck, by its impact with the locomotive above the cow catcher, had become so intricately fastened to the engine that it was necessary for another locomotive to tear the cab loose. There were no tire skid marks to indicate that the victims had seen the train and tried to stop. A physician passenger on the train from Minneapolis pronounced the two men dead.
The bodies were taken to the Lulloff Funeral Home in Colby, Wisconsin. Funeral services for the two men were conducted Monday morning at _:30 o’clock at St. Mary’s Catholic church, Rev. N. B. Beschta officiating at a requiem high mass, and internment was made in the Colby (Colby, Clark Co. Wis.) Cemetery. Pall bearers for John Ramker were Nick Gierl, Killian Gierl, Ben Apfelbeck, I. M. Firnstahl, John Gries and C. J. Kraus. Pall bearers for Melvin Ramker were Ralph Andrew, Jerry Firnstahl, Dale Reis, Gordon Schjonneman, Harold A. Schommer and Frank Obernberger. Those in charge of the flowers were Shirley Brill, Joan Feckhelm, Joanne Gierl and Mariin Hackel.
John Ramker was born in Greene, Iowa, July 15, 1888, and was married there in 1908 to Edith Adams. He farmed at Greene until coming to a farm at Neillsville in 1918. Eight years ago the family moved to the present Ramker farm in the town of Hull, route 1, Colby, Wisconsin.
Melvin was born in Greene, Iowa, Feb. 29, 1916, and served in the U.S. Army for nine months prior to his medical discharge in February, 1944. Since then he had been working on his father’s farm. Three years ago he was married to the former Ella Prange, who with their son, Kenneth, resides near Unity.
The elder Mr. Ramker is survived by his wife and seven children, Maxine Ramker, at home; Mrs. Louis (Velma) Becherer, Virgil and Max Ramker, and Merlin Ramker, twin brother of Melvin, all of Colby; Mrs. Clarence (Bernice) Koerner of Milwaukee; and Betty Ramker, at home.
Also surviving are his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Theodore Ramker, of Greene, Iowa; four brothers, Theodore, Jr., of Greene, Iowa, Lea of San Francisco, Calif., Vern of Waterloo, Iowa, and Loren of Knoxville, Iowa, and seven grand children.
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