Friday, February 17, 2017

Ozark Jack Berlin and the Train Wreck

In 2012 we posted a story about Ozark Jack Berlin, a colorful
Heavy metal pay phone,
 quarter, dime and nickle slots --
have you seen this phone?
character from Sumner.  And here he appears again, this time a hero. (You can use the search button on this blog site to read more about him.)  

Lawrence Country News
September 27, 1934

In the account of the wreck on the Big Four at State Street crossing last week the News stated that Jack Glosser, a youth from Petrolia pulled Everett Kiser and Richard Jacobs from the burning truck cab.  Later it developed a picturesque character known as Ozark Jack, a passenger on the train, was the man who rescued the truck drivers and assisted in getting the fireman from the engine cab. George Mobley, the fireman, was dead when extracted from the wreck and Jacobs died at the hospital in Vincennes. Kiser is well on the road to recovery.

Ozark Jack, whose real name is A.J. Berlin, who lives in Veedersburg, Indiana and was on his way  to Bridgeport to visit  a cousin, Charles Berlin and other relatives.  He was the first man out of the train and pulled the men from the burning truck. Their clothes were burning and he rubbed the flames out then went to the assistance of the fireman. That is his story as related when he was in Lawrenceville Monday on his way back to Veedersburg.

Ozark Jack is a native of Richland Country born south of Sumner, but has spent the greater part of his life in the wilds of the Ozark Mountains in Missouri. He carries a scrap book filled with the exploits of his colorful life, wears more medals than Andy Stiner and his costume is one to attract attention when he appears on the street.

Editor's comment: Unrelated to above article,...possibly,... this photo was donated recently to the Society, with the caption: Wreck of the New York Central at Lawrenceville."   We look forward to hearing from our train expert, J Hamilton, for more information.