Centre, AL Three Auto Collision, Dec 1969


A three-car crash near Centre Saturday evening caused seven deaths and two injuries.
The accident happened at 6:15 on Alabama Highway 9 a mile south of Cedar Bluff.
The sheriff of Cherokee County, C. M. Garrett, said that three cars were involved in the accident. He said that a car going north had ricocheted off a car going south straight into a second car traveling south.
The Sheriff named the six people killed as:
MRS. KAY HUDGINS, 20, of Gaylesville; MRS. LOUISE BURKHALTER, 55, of Cedar Bluff; JOHN ABERNATHY, 40, of Cedar Bluff; his sister NOBIE ABERNATHY, 50, of Cedar Bluff; their cousin MRS. JEWELL STODDARD, 50, of Cedar Bluff, and their nephew TROY ABERNATHY, 35, of Cedar Bluff.
EVELYN ABERNATHY, wife of TROY, was taken to hospital in Rome, Ga., seriously injured. She died there at about 11:30 p.m.
MICHAEL HUDGINS, 20, husband of KAY, was seriously injured and was taken to Gadsden Hospital for surgery. EDDIE SLAYTON, 20, of Gaylesville, who was traveling with the HUDGINS, was also taken to Gadsden seriously injured.
Sheriff Garrett said the Abernathy car hit the Hudgins car after richocheting off the car in which MRS. BURKHALTER was killed. Her husband was not injured.
A passing motorist tried unsuccessfully to reach law officers in Centre by telephone, state troopers said, then appealed to a Leesburg telephone operator for help.
The operator located the wife of Sheriff Garrett who sounded the call for help.
First reports said one of the cars caught fire, but was extinguished by local helpers by the time fire equipment arrived.
The deaths raised Alabama's weekend accident toll to at least 10.

Anniston Star Alabama 1969-12-21