|Agency||Cary Fire Protection District|
|Type of Firefighter||Volunteer|
|Age Range||46 to 50|
|Date of Birth||3/6/1913|
|Date of Death||3/31/1953|
|Cause of Death||Vehicle collision|
|Nature of Death||Trauma|
|Attribute of Death||[not applicable]|
|Type of Duty||Responding to/returning from incident|
On March, 28, 1953, the Cary Fire Protection District responded to a report of a fire behind Peters Bakery on West Main Street. The fire station at the time was located in the old Village Hall on Rt. 14. Milton Neeley was a volunteer firefighter and he worked at a local tavern about one block from the firehouse. The driver of the responding fire engine did not see Neeley jump onto the passenger side sideboard as the engine was rolling out the door. When they arrived at the fire, the engine entered through an alley. The building on the right side of the engine had an abutment that stuck out about two feet more than the width of the rest of the building. It was a tight squeeze and because the driver did not know that Neeley was riding on the passenger sideboard, he was crushed between the engine and the abutment on the brick wall.
Neeley’s injuries were fatal, but he was conscious at the scene. A passing woman even helped him smoke a cigarette until the ambulance arrived. Neeley suffered a crushed pelvis, among other injuries. He was taken to Sherman Hospital in Elgin, Ill., where he died on March 31, 1953. He left his wife Myrtle, sons Patrick and Terry, and his daughter, Cindy. He was buried in Cary Cemetery.
by Lieutenant Andy Veath, Cary Fire Protection District, 2007.