Merced Sun Star, Merced, CA. June 18, 1936, page three.
Former High School Student Killed By Truck Here
WILLIS GIBBONS CRUSHED ON R
Willis Gibbons, 18, a former Merced high school student, was killed instantly here last night when his head was crushed beneath the wheels of a truck driven by E. G. Murray of Merced.
The accident occurred on R between Sixteenth and Seventeenth. Murray was returning 4-H club girls from an encampment at Yosemite. Gibbons, Miss Margaret Smith and Murray were riding in the cab of the truck.
Murray stopped for the spur railroad crossing. After the stop he started the truck in low, he told District Attorney F. A. Silveira. He heard Gibbons say something was the matter with a clearance light.
Apparently Gibbons had opened the door of the truck and had fallen under the wheel of the semi-trailer. Murray said he felt a bump and then Miss Smith called his attention to Gibbons body in the road. The youth was dead when picked up.
Silveira expressed the belief Gibbons had missed the running board of the truck when he turned to look at the clearance lights, had slipped and fallen under the wheel.
His death is the first automobile fatality in Merced this year and is the twenty-eighth automobile in Merced county this year.
Dr. W. E. Lilley, coroner, declared no inquest will be held but he, and Deputy Coroner J. Vernon Ivers and Silveira are conducting an investigation.
"It was purely an accident," Silveira said after he questioned Murray.
Gibbons is survived by his father William A. Gibbons of Eureka, his mother, Mrs. Myrtle Gibbons and a sister Miss Dolores Gibbons both of Merced.
His body is at the Ivers and Alcorn funeral home.