Lafayette, CO Auto Collision Kills Five, Apr 1957


By Associated Press.
"Watch Out Grandma, watch out!" was all little 5-year-old DONALD ZARUBA of Erie could say Friday during his conscious moments.
Lying in the St. Vrain Hospital at Longmont, the son of Mr. and Mrs. Donald Zaruba of Erie was recalling the last frightful seconds before a traffic accident that took the lives of five people. One of the five was the grandmother he screamed his futile warning to.
DONALD is the only survivor. His two grandmothers, who were taking him to Denver for Easter shopping, apparently died protecting the boy.
The accident - worst traffic tragedy since last May 13 - took place Friday on rain-soaked Highway 287 near Lafayette.
Friday, twisting and thrashing beneath his tearful mother bent over him at the hospital and shrilling his warning, the boy had a concussion, 13 stitches in his head and 25 more stitches closing wounds ripped in his leg.
His mother could only answer "Mother is here, baby," in answer to his cry of terror at what must be to him the huge looming image of a car careening straight at him.
His two grandmothers, MRS. IRENE R. HASENACK, 47, the driver, and MRS. CECELIA JORDAN, 48, both of Erie, suffered fractured skulls and other injuries. The injuries indicate they died trying to protect him rather than themselves.
Killed in the other car were HENRY KEHM, 27, the driver, and MRS. EDNA SANTERLE, 39, both of Lafayette and MRS. BESSIE B. DEAN, 40, of Boulder. All suffered skull injuries.
Police said KEHM'S car, going north, apparently went out of control on the slick pavement and skidded sideways into MRS. HASENACK'S southbound auto.

Greeley Daily Tribune Colorado 1957-04-20