Cleveland, OH Launch BUTTERFLY Sinking, Sept 1904
One Body Was Washed Ashore
All Doubt About Drowning of Five Young Men is Removed.
Corpse of John Begley Floated Ashore at Edgewater Park.
Vivid Story Of Disaster
H.S. Walkemeyer Gives Dramatic Recital of the Struggles of the Victims to Get Launch Ashore-Watched Ill Fated Boat Until It Disappeared in the Gloom of Night-High Waves Interfered With Work of Life Saving Crew.
The body of John D. Begley, one of the five young men known to have been aboard the launch which capsized off Edgewater park Saturday evening, was found at 11 o’clock yesterday morning, washed ashore near the Edgewater bathhouse. The finding of this body yesterday and that of the launch the evening before, establishes beyond the shadow of doubt that all five young men lost their lives, and that the appearance of the other bodies is only a matter of time.
This is expected at any moment, but may not occur for several days. Capt. Motley of the life saving crew that stated last evening that the bodies would surely rise to the surface within three or four days, if they are not washed ashore sooner.
Meanwhile the life saving crew is doing the utmost to find the bodies. Capt. Motley, assisted by a member of the crew, began the work at 5 o’clock yesterday morning, at which time the subsiding waves first rendered dragging feasible. They desisted late in the afternoon, but will begin again at daylight this morning with improved apparatus. Their day’s work failed to bring to light any relic of the wreck. The lake was thoroughly dragged for nearly a mile on either side of the boathouse, the life savers’ boat rarely venturing more than 100 yards from shore, and keeping most of the time as near to the beach as the heavy breakers permitted. Especially thorough was the search in the immediate vicinity of the point where the boat came ashore last evening.
This was at a point about 200 yards east of the bathhouse, protected by a jetty, which runs out 100 feet or more from the rugged shore. Both shore and jetty were crowded throughout the day with a crowd composed partly of the curious, but partly also of friends and relatives of the missing men, many still cherishing hope that their worst fears might no be realized. They said little, but sat in groups of three or four, now scanning the tossing water of the lake for anything resembling a human body, now watching the life savers at their grewsome (sic) task.
It was one of these spectators, Ray C. Myers of No. 36 Tennessee street, who, about 11 o’clock, espied an object not twenty feet away pounding at the break of each wave against the bowlders (sic) which line the shore. Perceiving, a moment later, that the object was a human body, Myers waded out with difficulty and dragged it in. The body was at once identified as that of John D. Begley. With the exception of the coat, which was missing, the clothing was intact, but the body was terribly lacerated about the head and chest, principally, no doubt, through continued buffeting against the rocks. Adolph Nunn’s dead wagon was summoned and the body was taken to the undertaking rooms at No. 1097 Lorain street. Later it was removed to John I. Nunn’s undertaking rooms and from there conveyed to the dead man’s home at No 551 Scovill avenue, from which the funeral will be held.
The only new relic of the wreck washed ashore yesterday was a coat, which was found in the corner formed by the shore line and the projecting jetty, within a few feet of the spot where Begley’s body was found and where the boat came ashore last night.
The coat contained nothing in the pockets to indicate its ownership. It bore the label, however, of Douthett & Graham, a Youngstown and Buckley (Pa.) firm. This leads to the conclusion that he coat belonged to one of the Hurtig brothers, who had recently been in both these towns and both of whom are known to have work coats similar in design to the one found.