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General Patton auto accident...



Item # 643286

December 10, 1945

THE NEW YORK TIMES, December 10, 1945

* General George S. Patton automobile accident
* Post World War II reports


The top of the front page has a two column headline: "Patton Seriously Injured As Auto Hits Army Truck" with subhead and photo of Patton. (see) First report coverage on General George Patton's auto accident which would lead to his ultimate death a week and a 1/2 later. Always nice to have notable events in history reported in this World famous publication.
Other news, sports and advertisements of the day. Complete in 38 pages, this is the rare rag edition that was produced on very high quality newsprint, with a high percentage of cotton & linen content, allowing the issues to remain very white & sturdy into the present. Given the subscription cost, libraries & institutions rather than individuals were the primary subscribers of these high-quality editions. Nice condition.

wikipedia notes: On December 9, 1945, Patton was severely injured in a road accident. He and his chief of staff, Major General Hobart R. "Hap" Gay, were on a day trip to hunt pheasants in the country outside Mannheim. Their 1938 Cadillac Model 75 was driven by Private First Class Horace Woodring (1926–2003), with Patton sitting in the back seat on the right side, with General Gay on his left, as per custom. At 11:45 near Neckarstadt (Mannheim-Käfertal), a 2½ ton GMC truck driven by Technical Sergeant Robert L. Thompson made a left turn in front of Patton's Cadillac. Patton's car hit the front of the truck, at a low speed.

At first the crash seemed minor, the vehicles were hardly damaged, no one in the truck was hurt, and Gay and Woodring were uninjured. However, Patton was leaning back with trouble breathing. The general had been thrown forward and his head struck a metal part of the partition between the front and back seats, incurring a cervical spinal cord injury. Paralyzed from the neck down, he was rushed to the military hospital in Heidelberg. Patton died of a pulmonary embolism on December 21, 1945. The funeral service was held at the Christ Church (Christuskirche) in Heidelberg-Südstadt.

Category: The 20th Century

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