Sarah Catherine Numer Byers (1860 - 1903)




Mt Carroll, Carroll County, Illinois





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Jeri Scott Sarah Byers,died from getting trapped in a barn fire. Sarah was at the family home south of Uniontown, Bourbon County, Kansas. At about 1:00 in the afternoon, the barn/stable, a small hay & board structure was discovered to be on fire. The family had just finished lunch and most were still in the house. Mr. Byers and the two oldest boys hurried to try to rescue the horses, Mrs. Byers following. The wind was feeding the flames and only four of the six horses could be cut loose, but only three of the four got out safely, leaving three to die. The flames were so bad they drove the boys out of the barn and that's when they realized that their Mother Mrs. Byers had gone inside also. They immediately told their Father Mr. Byers who ran to try and rescue his wife. But the entrance was blocked by the death struggles of one of the horses, he could not get in and Mrs. Byers couldn't get out. When the horse's struggling calmed, Sarah sprang over the horse but her hair and clothing was a mass of flames. She was immediately rushed to a watering trough where the fire was extinguished. However, she was already severely burned. Doctors Lewis and Millington of Hepler were summoned. They did all they could for her but her head, shoulders and hands were so badly burned, there was little they could do. Sarah passed away after 34 hours of intense suffering. Mr. Byers and his son Wiley also suffered severe burns on their hands from trying to extinguish the flames from Sarah 's clothing and hair. It is supposed that the two youngest boys aged six and four had started the barn fire. During her last hours of life Sarah barely uttered a word even though she was in such intense pain. She was a terrific farm wife, a great friend and a very Loving Mother. Funeral services were conducted by Rev. Crumpacker, held at the Dunkard Church near Redfield, Kansas & she was laid to rest at the Dunkard Cemetery. The services were attended by a host of sorrowing and sympathizing friends.
{A side note: the two youngest boys would have been Orva & my Grandfather Clarence, how horrible this must have been to carry with them all their lives.} J.S.
Mar 03, 2014 · Reply

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