William J. Wright, 68, valley farmer, was fatally injured yesterday afternoon [August 15, 1934] when he was struck by a car driven by Rex Willard of Pullman as he stepped from behind a car into the highway five miles east of town on the Vantage Road.
Mr. Wright, riding to a point near his home with George Minielly, had left the car and stepped from behind the car to cross the highway en route home. He appeared in the path of Mr. Willard’s car, was struck down and dragged a considerable distance, according to reports of officers. An ambulance was called but Mr. Wright was dead by the time he reached the hospital.
Mr. Willard, in reporting the accident to the prosecuting attorney, states that the suddenness of Mr. Wright’s appearance and his indecision at continuing or turning back made it impossible for him to prevent hitting the man.
Mr. Willard was returning home after speaking on a soil classification program before a joint meeting of the Chamber of Commerce and Rotary Club. With him were his wife and two daughters.
Mr. Wright leaves three sons and three daughters, Joseph, Ems, Orville and Mrs. Marie Gage, all of Ellensburg, Mrs. Lee Smathers, Chelan and Helen LaFon, Fairbanks, Alaska, and a brother, Joseph, Highwood, Mont., and a stepmother, Sarah E. Wright, Mt. Joliet, Tenn.
He had lived in the valley 25 years and on the farm east of town for 17 years. He was affectionately know as “Dad.” Funeral arrangements have not been announced. [Interment in IOOF Cemetery]
Contributed by: Shelli Steedman