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Looking back: Man struck by lightning, teen escapes school before robbing businesses and weddings

Looking Back

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EAST IDAHO — Every week, East Idaho News is looking back in time at what life was like during this week in history.


IDAHO FALLS — A Lewisville man was struck by lightning while irrigating a field near Lewisville on Aug. 24, 1921, according to The Rigby Star.

B.L. Hallibaugh, 50, was found lying unconscious, partly in a ditch with a shovel nearby. His clothes were reportedly “torn by the bolt,” and he had burns on the side of his head, left side and both feet.

Dr. Oel Call took care of Hallibaugh, who was “recovering from the shock” that evening, the paper explained.


THORNTON — The Rexburg Standard announced on Aug. 23, 1943, that a suspect involved in local robberies had been apprehended.

Marcel Werth, 16, escaped from the state industrial school and was being held in the Madison County Jail on federal charges for burglarizing the Thornton Post Office and robbing the Pep Service Station and Marler Merc in Thornton.

He stole a car from St. Anthony and drove to Rexburg, where he robbed the Pep Service Station and stole $20. Werth then stole another vehicle and went to Thornton. He broke into Marler Merc and stole merchandise before taking $7 in federal money from the post office in the Marler Merc building.

Werth then headed to Blackfoot where a police officer caught him “prowling automobiles” and the officer alerted Madison County deputies.

Federal officers went to Madison County to file charges against Werth in regards to what happened at the post office. The paper said, “Federal inspectors complimented the local officers for the fine way in which the case had been handled.”


PRESTON — An entire page in The Preston Citizen on Aug. 29, 1963, was dedicated to marriage. The articles talked about three upcoming weddings and mentioned where the marriages would take place. Short biographies about both the bride and groom were also included.

The page even listed bridal showers that were recently hosted including who hosted the parties and who they were honoring. One article stated the names of every guest who attended and what food was served.

Fifty year wedding anniversaries were highlighted in the paper too. One of the couples celebrating was Mr. and Mrs. Lewellyn Olsen of Weston, who were the parents of three sons and two daughters. They had 19 grandchildren and four great-grandchildren at the time of their anniversary.


POCATELLO — A select group of people in Pocatello we’re going to be interviewed “in an attempt to analyze their views on the quality of their lives in American society today” according to the Idaho State Journal Aug. 25, 1977 edition.

Carol Dormier of Pocatello was going to go door-to-door to talk to people between the ages of 48 and 52 or 68 and 72 for the survey.

The survey was supported by the Administration on Aging and was being conducted nationwide by the American Institutes for Research.

The results of the survey were to be used in “defining a systematic way to prioritize the needs of older Americans.”