Rushville Times July 27, 1927 
Pg 108 from misc. happenings in Schuyler County, Illinois

Bainbridge Farmer, Aged Sixty-five Years Past,

Found Dead In Pasture Lot On His Home Farm.  Bady Badly Mutilated 

  Leander Ward, native resident of Bainbridge township, suffered a horrible death Thursday evening between the hours of 6 and 9 o'clock, when he was killed and almost completely devoured by ravenous hogs at his farm home.
  Mr. Ward left the house about 6 o'clock p.m. to do his evening chores and when he failed to return to the house, as darkness came on, his wife became alarmed.  She called neighbors by telephone and Arthur Illman first responded and came at once to the farm home.  After Mrs. Ward had told of her husband's long absence he went to the pasture lot where he was horrified to find a bunch of hogs surrounding the body of the aged man, who only a short time before had left his home in apparent good health.

  Mr. Illman experienced some trouble in driving the hogs away, and it was only when other neighbors came to assist him was this accomplished, as the taste of blood had crazed the beasts.


  The body was terribly mutilated and had it not been known that Mr. Ward had gone into the field and have not returned identification would have been impossible other than from the fragments of blood stained clothing that he wore.  His face, arms and legs had been attacked by the hogs and almost completely devoured and the trunk of his body was badly mutilated.

  After the hogs had been driven from the field by the neighbors assembled the body was brought to the C. H. Hammond undertaking parlors and prepared for burial.

  Dr. W. F. Justus, county coroner, was notified and after an examination of the body and an interview with some of those who drove the infuriated swine away, he decided to forego holding an inquest, but instead held an inquiry and signed the death certificate on the facts as brought out in substance as stated above.

  Whether Mr. Ward, who was in his sixty-sixth year, was suddenly stricken by paralysis and fell dead in the hog lot, or had stumbled and fell prone on the ground while still alive, will never be known, as there was no outcry and no eye witnesses to his tragic death.


  Funeral services, conducted by Rev. C. W. Monson, were held Sunday afternoon at 3 o'clock from the First M. E. Church.  Interment was made in Resthaven Mausoleum.  The following obituary, written by a life-long friend and neighbor, was read at the service:

  Elias Leander, second child of Henry M. and Mary Ann Ward, was born in Bainbridge township, Schuyler county,  March 10, 1862, and passed out of this earthly life at his farm home three miles from Rushville, on July 21, 1927, aged 65 years, 4 months and 11 days.

  He was united in marriage to Carrie C. Lenover March 21, 1886.  To this union were born four children: Everett, Leander H., Abba Lilly King of Schuyler county and Ollie Pearl {Olive} Whitson of Cuba, Mo., all of whom with  the wife are left to mourn the loss of a husband and father.  Some time after forty years ago he with his wife united with the Southern M. E. Church at Mt. Carmel, under the ministration of H. H. Jones.  Altho not of  a very strong or robust constitution yet he was noted for his energy and perseverance and for his remarkable habits of industry.  He is also survived by one half-brother, John A., and three half-sisters, Mrs. Dora Dodds, Mrs. Rosannah Lenover and Adaline Bowman, also thirteen grand children.

  On the day of his death he assisted in putting hay in the barn and after eating supper went to drive some hogs to the pasture, and to bring up the cows, but not returning as soon as his wife thought he should, and being bodily crippled with rheumatism herself, she called some neighbors over the telephone to look for him, which resulted in finding his lifeless body in the pasture not far from the public highway, and thus was the sudden and unexpected passing away of this father, husband, friend, neighbor, and good citizen.  We are again reminded of the uncertainty of life and the certainty of death. 

submitted by: Tammy Matthews <tamlmat@casscomm.com>

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