Bio: Lindow and Johnson cousins (Deaths - 1953)


Contact: Dolores Mohr Kenyon


Surnames: Lindow, Johnson, Gault, Grottke, McNaul, Bersell, Manz 

----Source: Clark County Press (Neillsville, Clark Co., WI.) July 30, 1953 

Lindow and Johnson Cousins (Deaths –27 July 1953)  

Lives of Lindow and Johnson snuffed out as they played in a pit -  

A lone bicycle and empty shoes and stockings were the alarm which on Monday shook Wallace Lindow of Lynn into feverish activity.  His little boy Mark 5, was telling him that he could not find his cousins, Gloria Lindow and Charlene Johnson.  

"they are hiding from you," said the father, knowing the manner of the girls’ play. 

"No" said little Mark, "Gloria’s bicycle is there, and the girls’ shoes and stockings." 

To Wallace Lindow that meant the perils of a sand pit.  He ran across the road to the pit on the farm of his brother, Merlin; found there the bike and empty shoes and stockings, and saw a fresh slide on the 25-foot sand bank.  The girls, he knew, had dug a cave there.  The girls were under the shifting sand. 

They Dig Desperately 

Wallace Lindow tried to dig the sand away, but the fluid sand flowed in as fast as he could dig.  He ran to the phone to give the alarm to the Chili and Marshfield fire departments, and out came the rigs with the firemen upon them.  They all dug in desperation. But too much time had passed.  The sand had cut off the air, and the two girls had suffocated. 

Gloria Lindow, 13, was the daughter of Raymond Lindow, youngest of four children.  Visiting her was her cousin Charlene Johnson, daughter of Charles Johnson of Marshfield.  The two girls had played before in the sand pit.  The pervious afternoon they had made a cave for themselves and had crawled into it.  There was a slide then, but the cave and the slide were small. On Monday they presumably made the cave larger, went into it and were caught by the heavy slide. 

Gloria is the youngest of the four children of Mr. and Mrs. Raymond Lindow.  Her older sister is Mrs. Franklin Gault of Neillsville.  Her brothers are Merlin, who lives on the old family farm with the sand pit, and Wallace, who lies across the road from Merlin. 

Tried Resuscitators 

The bodies were recovered by Wallace Lindow, Fred Grottke and his son Louis, Burdette McNaul of Chili and Don Bersell, fire Chief of Chili.  Resuscitators were used on the girls for 40 minutes, but without avail. Dr. Kenneth Manz of Neillsville had been called, and he pronounced the girls dead.  They had been covered by only 1 ½ feet of sand. 

Services for Gloria were announced for Thursday at 2 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church, Nasonville; burial in the parish cemetery.  Gloria was born October 16, 1939.  She attended Maple Grove School, Town of Lynn. She had been for three years a member of the Jolly Jills 4-H club. 

Final rites for Charlene will be held at 2 p.m. Friday in Immanuel Lutheran Church, Marshfield; burial in Hillside Cemetery. Charlene was born June 3, 1939.  She was the daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Johnson and the granddaughter of Ludwig Johnson, veteran cheesemaker at the Chili corner. 



© Every submission is protected by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of 1998.


Show your appreciation of this freely provided information by not copying it to any other site without our permission.


Become a Clark County History Buff


Report Broken Links

A site created and maintained by the Clark County History Buffs
and supported by your generous donations.


Webmasters: Leon Konieczny, Tanya Paschke,

Janet & Stan Schwarze, James W. Sternitzky,

Crystal Wendt & Al Wessel